SB 154 on the House Floor

By S.D. Plissken | May 31, 2019

New Hampshire Senate Bill (SB) 154 (2019) passed out of the House Municipal and County Government Committee and reached the House floor last Thursday afternoon, May 23, at 3:18:29 PM.

This is the bill originally authorizing a study of workforce housing tax deductions, but now including a “problematic” side order of authorizing the sale, sans voter approval, of Milton’s “Old Fire Station.” (See NH SB 154 Amended).

House Speaker Steve Shurtleff (D-Concord): The majority of the Committee on Municipal and County Government, to which was referred Senate Bill 154, an Act – new title – “Allowing municipalities to adopt a credit against property taxes for certain workforce housing, and authorizing the sale of certain property by the Town of Milton,” having considered the same, report the same, with the following amendment, and with a recommendation that the bill Ought-to-Pass [OTP] with amendment. – Representative Clyde Carson [D-Warner)] for a majority of the committee. The minority of the committee, having considered the same, and being unable to agree with the majority, report with the following resolution: “Resolved, that it is Inexpedient-to-Legislate [ITL].” – Representative Mona Perrault [(R-Rochester)], for the minority of the committee. The question before the House is on the adoption of the majority amendment, 1577 H, printed in House Record 25, and found on Pages 29 to 30. Are you ready for the question? All those in favor, say Aye.

Some number of House members: Aye.

House Speaker: Opposed, Nay.

Some number of House members: No.

House Speaker: The Ayes have it, and the motion carries. [Looking stage right]. I’m sorry … We’re in the voting mode… I heard … you wanted …

Representative Michael Sylvia (R-Belmont): To make a motion.

House Speaker: Please come, state your motion.

House Clerk: The motion to divide.

Representative Sylvia: Sorry, Mr. Speaker, I was off on my timing. I would like to move to divide the question to remove section six of the bill.

This would have the effect of splitting Senate Bill 154 into two separate bills: 1) the original workforce housing bill, and 2) authorization of the sale of Milton’s old fire station.

House Speaker: I’ve talked with the clerk about this motion to divide, and the issue that has arisen and we have, and I have as the speaker, in having to make a decision, to take out section six, dealing with the Town of Milton, would be fine. But by leaving in sections one through five, and section seven – section seven being the effective date of the bills – which say that this shall take effect upon passage – the section six, if the motion was to prevail, that that section six should pass, and the House votes that way, section six has no effective date, so it would be out there in limbo. So, it would be in … it’s not divisible, is what I am trying to tell you. But I am trying to give you an explanation for why it is not divisible.

Representative Sylvia: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, then I would like to speak against the bill.

House Speaker: Yeah. Well, first we have to fix our computer again. Oh, that’s good. Thank you. I have you signed up to speak again. So, the member from Belmont is recognized. And thank you for your forbearance.

Representative Sylvia: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I apologize for the confusion. I have no intent to affect the study committee section of this bill, but the reference to the section on the Town of Milton being allowed to sell the old fire house is very problematic. So, my first opposition to this bill is when we make statutes that particularly point out one Town, and in this particular case, one specific property, I think those sorts of bills are problematic.

The … Once I started looking into it, when you look at RSA 41:14a Roman 2C, this essentially prohibits the selectmen from selling a property that is held in trust, which has been bequeathed to the Town, and that certainly brought a bit of curiosity to my mind, whereas somebody had very generously given a property to the Town and now the Town was looking to dispose of it. And certainly if they [the original donors] had intended some particular purpose for the property, the statute as it currently reads is very clear, and it’s very fine. That, we have a section within the Attorney General’s office, which is for charitable trusts and they track the purposes of assets.

For instance, the University of New Hampshire probably has many, and we took one up in Judiciary this year, referencing a school in agriculture, and assuring … the Attorney General’s trust division assures that what was promised, when the property was given, is adhered to.

And in this process that particular line of statute has a provision which directs if the Town, the property, the use perhaps fades away, and it no longer really fits within the trust it was given for, there is a fancy legal French term, which is Cy-Près, which is a doctrine which says, well, the Attorney General’s office of  trusts, or the probate court, or superior court, depending on which way these things go, they would look into this intended purpose of the property, and find the next closest match for either using the property, or if it is sold, then continuing those funds, on the direction of what they were intended for.

So, doing further research, as I should, if you are going to get up and oppose a bill that is mostly very well supported, I called the Attorney General’s division of charitable trusts, and asked them about the property, and tried to figure out what the purpose was that it was given to the Town for, and as it turns out, the property was given to the Town with no restrictions.

Now, this creates a bit of a problem, because we are exempting the Town from using this particular statute, when this particular statute is not applicable. Now, there is another process for the select-board of the Town to sell property, and it’s just before that in 41:14a Roman I.

As I understand it, the … it seems like, and I don’t have all of the facts, I haven’t talked to the Town, but they seem to not quite read the statute correctly. They believe that they would have to bring this to the Town Meeting on a Warrant Article to sell. That is part of a possible solution, and it’s going to be what they will have to do anyway, because we’re not really affecting anything with this change. It’s a nullity.

So, to the Town of Milton, I would say, you need to look at that first part again. It does not require, automatically, that it goes on a warrant article. The statute says they will have the planning commission and the conservation commission look at this, and then they will have two public meetings, fourteen days apart, and unless fifty Town citizens challenge that with a petition, which would require it to go onto a warrant article, and postpone the sale of the property, they can … they are going to have to go through this regular process anyway.

And I think we should really consider, as Memorial Day approaches, [that] the legislature made laws, and there is nothing wrong with the laws, and this little section is totally unnecessary, uncalled for. Further, I think that anytime that some good citizen bequeaths to a Town a property, it should be treated with great respect. And I think that that’s my story and I think that we should not approve this process, and I am sorry that we approved the amendment. Perhaps we could find someone who wanted to reconsider. That’s my spiel, thank you for listening.

House Speaker: The question before the house is the recommendation that the bill Ought-to-Pass as amended. The chair recognizes Representative Carson to speak in support of the recommendation.

Representative Carson: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I just want to talk to the fire station aspect of this bill, because I have looked into it, and I want to talk a little bit [about] what I found out about it. In 1880, some volunteers in the Town of Milton built a fire house for the Town and donated it to the Town.

Recently, that Town of Milton, as you might expect, outgrew that fire station and built a new fire station. And they would like to find a new owner for the old fire station, so they can get it back on the tax rolls. There’s a statute that says, as the good representative mentioned, that if selectmen have the authority to buy and sell property, they can do so, except in a few situations, and one of those is when something is donated.

So, the Town went, and they did go through the due diligence of going to the division of charitable trusts. They checked out this charitable trust and said, there’s no strings here, all you have to do is go back and bring it to your Town Meeting and get the authority to do it.

I’m a selectmen in a Town that has a fire station up for sale.  There’s not a lot of market for used fire stations. When you have a buyer, you’d like to do it, and that’s what the Town of Milton has.

They missed getting it on the warrant for this Town Meeting. They have a willing buyer that wants to buy the fire station. And they went to their state senator [Jeb Bradley] in Wolfeboro and said could you help us out, This good senator said, I’ll add it to one of my bills. He’s a private sponsor of this bill. And it came to our committee and we thought it was a good idea to help out the Town of Milton as well. We’ve done this before for other Towns when they need to make something happen in a hurry. They’ve done all their due diligence. And with regards to the fire station, I ask you to support the bill on that behalf. Thank you.

House Speaker: Will the speaker yield for a question?

Representative Carson: No.

Representatives Max Abramson (R-Seabrook) and Laurel Stavis (D-West Lebanon) rose to speak against and for the workforce housing aspect of SB 154.

Representative Carson rose to explain the parliamentary aspect of what a yes or no vote would mean in terms of passage.

SB 154 passed with 250 votes [73.7%] in favor and 89 [26.3%] opposed. The votes of particular representatives are not available at this time.


“Sovereignty resides in the people.” – John Locke. “Unless you flub the deadline of getting it on the people’s warrant.” – NH House Majority.


References:

NH General Court. (2019). RSA 41:14a. Acquisition or Sale of Land, Buildings, or Both. Retrieved from www.gencourt.state.nh.us/rsa/html/iii/41/41-14-a.htm

NH House of Representatives. (2019, May 23). House Session, May 23, 2019. Retrieved from sg001-harmony.sliq.net/00288/Harmony/en/PowerBrowser/PowerBrowserV2/20190523/1029/21374#agenda_

Wikipedia. (2019, May 25). Cy-Près Doctrine. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cy-près_doctrine

 

Milton in the News – 1897

By Muriel Bristol (Transcriber) | May 30, 2019

In this year, we encounter another Nute High School teacher, a Milton Mills farm for sale, and some visiting rusticators.

(This was also the year of the Preacher and Druggist, and the Jones Poisoning Murder).


Here we have another early Nute High School teacher, Miss Lillian A. McAllister, who taught here for at least the 1896-97 academic year, and, if she stuck to her decision mentioned here, the 1897-98 academic year.

Lillian A. McAllister was born in Moriah, NY, October 28, 1874, daughter of Rev. Dr. William C. and Angela M. (Bronson) McAllister.

NEWBURY CENTER. Miss Lillian McAllister, daughter of Rev. N.C. McAllister of Manchester, N.H., was highly complimented a short time ago by being tendered a position at Columbia University. Miss McAllister was a graduate from Vassar college last June, and is now instructor in French and mathematics in the Nute Endowed High School in Milton, Mass. She has recently been invited to become an assistant in the astronomical observatory of Columbia University, New York City. Naturally Miss McAllister feels highly complimented as the invitation came entirely unsought through the recommendation of the Faculty at Vassar. Her record as a student was such that she was selected out of quite a number. She has just become adjusted to her present surroundings and finds them very agreeable and feeling a moral obligation to the school where she is now employed, Miss McAllister has decided to remain m Milton (United Opinion (Bradford, VT), February 23, 1897).

THE TATTLER. Miss Lillian McAllister has declined an invitation to become an assistant in the observatory of Columbia university. Miss McAllister graduated in June from Vassar and is now teaching French and mathematics in the Nute Endowed High school in Milton, N.H. (Springfield Recorder (Springfield, VT). April 16, 1897).

William C. McAllester, a [Baptist] clergyman, aged fifty-one years (b. NY), headed a Randolph, MA, household at the time of the Twelfth (1900) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of twenty-six years), Angela M. McAllester, aged forty-nine years (b. NY), and his children, Lillian McAllester, a school teacher, aged twenty-five years (b. NY), Ralph W. McAllester, a student, aged twenty-two years (b, NY), and Grace E. McAllester, at school, aged fourteen years (b. NY).

Miss McAllister spent most of her teaching career in Gloucester, MA. (For a fuller account of her life, see Miss Benson’s Successors, 1895-14).


We encountered the Hapgood family previously when their son visited their Milton farmstead from his home in South Royalton, VT, in 1895. Here we find Mr. Hapgood putting the family farm on the market.

Wilbur Hapgood was born in Hudson, MA, October 29, 1837, son of Moses and Sally (Weatherbee) Hapgood.

Wilbur Hapgood came from Hudson, MA, to Milton (Milton Mills), NH, circa 1875-76.

Real Estate. FOR SALE – 108-acre southern N.H. farm, pleasant location, buildings in fair repair, good grass land, cuts 2 tons hay, lots of wood, some lumber, plenty of fruit, milk retails at village, 1 mile from P.O., graded schools, churches, manufactories, good neighbors, good place for summer boarders; price $2500. For further particulars, inquire of WILBUR HAPGOOD, Milton Mills, N.H. (Boston Globe, June 9, 1897).

Wilbur Hapgood, a farmer, aged sixty-two years (b. MA), headed a Milton household at the time of the Twelfth (1900) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of thirty years), M. Elizabeth Hapgood, aged fifty-nine years (b. MA), and his daughter, Carrie M. Hapgood, aged eighteen years (b. NH). He owned his farm free-and-clear. They appear in the enumeration between the households of Reuben J. Wentworth, a carpenter, aged sixty-seven years (b. NH), and William F. Mills, 2d, a house painter, aged forty years (b. NH).

Daughter Carrie M. Hapgood died in 1902. Wilbur Hapgood died in Milton Mills, November 6, 1908, aged seventy-one years, and eight days.


The Sunshine of Paradise Alley was a popular song of 1895. John W. Bratton wrote the music, Walter H. Ford the lyrics. The sheet music sold for 20¢ at a music store, but was published also in the Boston Globe issue of Sunday, September 15, 1895. (You may hear it sung by Fred Field, accompanied by a player piano).

Sunshine SceneIn the following year, September 1896, a musical play of that same name appeared at Boston’s Tremont Theater. Phila May, a member of the Verdi Quartet of singers, who appeared in the musical, as well as in a Boston bicycle parade.

THE THEATER. Conspicuous in the bicycle parade yesterday was the Verdi Quartet of “The Sunshine of Paradise Alley,” which is to open the season at the Tremont tomorrow night. They were Blanche Edwards, Marie Blanchard, Lizzie Farrell and Phila May, four of the prettiest girls awheel in the entire procession, and they sang as they pedalled gracefully along (Boston Globe, August 30, 1896).

In the summer of 1897, the play’s business agent, Louis Miller, and his wife, Phila May, visited Milton as rusticators.

Foyer and Greenroom Gossip. Louis Miller, business representative of “The Sunshine of Paradise Alley,” and Mrs. Miller (Phila May) are at Milton, N.H., during the heated term. They will entertain Mr. and Mrs. Ryer the first two weeks in August (Boston Globe, July 25, 1897).

George W. Ryer and Denman Thompson were the playwrights of The Sunshine of Paradise Alley.

Miller, Louis and Phila May-2.jpg
Phila May (Griffin) and Louis P. Miller, c1890 (Photo: Jim Griffin)

Phila May Griffin was born in Berlin Falls, NH, May 20, 1864, daughter of Charles H. and Charlotte D. (Washburne) Griffin.

As a child, Phila, also called the “Songbird of Milan [NH],” grew up on the old Henry Holt homestead. Phila had her first lessons in music by Jesse Tuttle of Berlin, a Civil War veteran who was the postmaster at that time. Her first public appearance was a concert in the church in Milan when she was just six years old. At the age of 16, Phila went to Boston, Mass. to continue her studies under the supervision of John O’Neal (Berlin, n.d.).

Phila May Griffin married on Boston, MA, November 24, 1886, Louis Paul Miller, he of Boston and she of Berlin Falls, NH. He was a vocalist, aged twenty-eight years, she was aged twenty-two years. He was born in Boston, June 29, 1858, son of Gustavus A. and Caroline M. Miller.

Louis Miller, a public singer, aged thirty-three years, applied for a passport for his wife and himself in Boston, MA, May 25, 1891. She is said to have formed an opera company that performed in Europe, principally Germany. This tour might have happened either before (and thus the passport) or after the theatrical run of Sunshine of Paradise Alley. (It ran at least five seasons (1896-00)). Their absence from the 1900 census might have been due to them being in Europe.

Louis Miller, a theater manager, aged forty-nine years (b. MA), headed a Manhattan, New York, NY, household at the time of the Thirteenth (1910) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of fifteen years), Phila Miller, aged thirty-nine years (b. NH). They resided in an apartment building at 20-22 West 98th Street.

Louis Miller died in Daytona Beach, FL, December 9, 1938. She was living, in Daytona Beach, FL, as late as 1940.


The following assorted rusticators came also to Milton from the greater Boston area.

Table Gossip. Mr. and Mrs. Daniel E. Chase, Miss Emma Grimes, Miss Florence Arnold, Mr. and Mrs. W.H. Ralph, Miss H. Florence Ralph, Mrs. F.O. Arnold, Miss Jessie Mansfield, Mr. and Mrs. Osmond Park, Mrs. Joseph H. Metcalf and Mr. and Mrs. A.A. Tapley and daughter are at camp Oasis, Milton, N.H. (Boston Globe, August 1, 1897).

Daniel E. Chase was a Charlestown distiller; Miss Florence Arnold was his niece. Miss Emma Grimes was a Chase family housekeeper. William H. Ralph was a Somerville retail provisioner; H. Florence Ralph was their daughter. Osmond F. Park was a Boston optician. Joseph H. Metcalf was a Charlestown policeman. Albert A. Tapley was a Chelsea salesman.

What this eclectic gathering appears to have had in common was membership in the Masons (or the Eastern Star).


Previous in sequence: Milton in the News – 1896; next in sequence: Milton in the News – 1898


References:

Berlin, New Hampshire History. (n.d.). Biographical Sketches. Retrieved May 29, 2019 from berlinhistory.weebly.com/biographical-sketches.html

Find a Grave. (2015, September 9). Lillian A. McAllester. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/152112142

Find a Grave. (2015). Wilbur Hapgood. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/115416013

YouTube. (2017, March 9). Sunshine of Paradise Alley (1895). Retrieved from www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6sv-iKSxrg

 

Milton’s Poisoning Murder – 1897

By Muriel Bristol (Transcriber) | May 26, 2019

Milton was the locus in quo for a sensational Jones poisoning murder in December 1896. The crime was discovered in June 1897. (Most of the related events occurred in 1897 and 1898).


Dramatis Personae

William Jones (the Father), was born in Randolph, MA, January 28, 1822, son of Obadiah and Abigail “Nabby” (Madden) Jones.

He married in Randolph, MA, March 29, 1840, Sarah W. “Sally” Ellis (the Mother). She was born in Alton, NH, in 1823, daughter of John and Olive (Bickford) Ellis.

They resided initially in Randolph, MA, where they had children Josiah Jones (b. 1841), Rufus L. Jones (b. 1843), Ezra E. Jones (b. 1845), (the Son) Alfred W. Jones (b. 1848), Maria J. Jones (b. 1850), and (the Daughters,) Henrietta Jones (b. 1852), and Leola I. Jones (b. 1854).

The Jones family then moved to Alton, NH, sometime between 1854 and 1860, where they may be found in the Eighth (1860) Federal Census. They were in Rollinsford, NH, in 1870, and Alton again in 1880. Their son, Alfred W. Jones resided in Milton in 1880, and the parents took up residence there sometime between 1880 and 1896. (They should not be confused with other families of that name residing already in Milton).

The Jones family assets seemed to have belonged to Mrs. Sally W. Jones. Deeds, papers, promissory notes, and even family jewels, are mentioned as being hers personally and kept in her triple-locked strong box.

The Accident and the Death

She and her husband traveled by carriage to Rochester, in October 1896, where they withdrew a final mortgage payment from the bank and set up her pension (perhaps an annuity). They returned via Farmington, intending to pay off the mortgage and to visit one of their daughters on the way. Their carriage took a glancing blow from a passing train near Place’s Crossing and ejected them. (On modern NH Route 11 near the Taylor Rental store). Both were injured, but she more seriously.

They were laid up at their daughter Leola Prescott’s home in Farmington, but he was able to return to Milton after two days. She remained much longer. Their son, Alfred W. Jones, visited her there and prevailed upon her to draw up a will, which named him as administrator. She first became ill, as opposed to injured, at this time. She burned the will upon returning home to Milton.

She died in Milton, December 5, 1896, after suffering two days with a recurrence of her illness. Milton Vital Records attributed her death to an intestinal stoppage.


The Exhumation

Six months later, on April 7, 1897, her son, Alfred W. Jones, and two of his sisters Henrietta (Jones) Dorsey and Leola I. (Jones) Prescott, declared that she had been poisoned and accused their father of having done it.

(Despite the newspaper report, we may note that it was the son, Alfred W. Jones, who put forward the claim of a dispute between his parents).

WANT THE BODY EXHUMED. – Daughters of Mrs. Jones Declare They Relieve their Mother Was Poisoned and They Suspect Their Father.

SOMERSWORTH, N.H., April 7. – Alfred W. Jones of Milton. N.H, and his sisters. Mrs. Henrietta Dorsey of Springvale, Me. and Mrs. Leola Prescott of Acton, Me, were here today and applied to Coroner L.E. Grant for a permit to exhume the body of their mother, Mrs. Sally W. Jones, who died at Milton. Dec. 5, 1896. They stated that they have every reason to believe that their mother was poisoned and that suspicion points to their father, William Jones, as administering the poison. Mrs. Jones, they allege, was taken ill with violent pains in the stomach two hours after eating dinner Dec. 3, and died two days later, being unconscious part of the time. The doctor’s certificate of death gave the cause as stoppage of the bowels. Mr. Jones, they say, desired her to make over her property to him, otherwise “there would be a corpse In the house.” He had poison in the house. they aver, and he is opposed to having the remains exhumed. They called on County Solicitor Nason this forenoon and requested him for the permit. He gave them a letter to present to Atty. Gen. Eastman, which they will present. They state that they will exhaust every means to have the body exhumed and have the cause of death settled. Coroner Grant has made arrangements to consult with Prof. Wood of Harvard college in regard to the case, as the body was embalmed at death, and he desires to know what effect the embalming fluid would have on the body (Boston Globe, April 7, 1897).

(Note that the police seemed to have played no part in all this at all. Milton had then only a part-time police chief (see Milton’s Men of Muscle in 1900), who would not have been equipped to deal with this. Nor did the county sheriff take the fore).

Alfred W. Jones sought an exhumation order from Strafford County Coroner L.E. Grant, of Great Falls (Somersworth), who directed him to Strafford County Solicitor William F. Nason, of Dover, who refused to issue the exhumation order.

NH Attorney General Eastman ordered finally the exhumation, which took place in June 1897.

A forensic expert, Edward S. Woods (1846-1905), was consulted. He was a professor of Chemistry at Harvard College (now Harvard University). Professor Woods seemed to have been consulted in a great many New England murder cases from at least the early 1880s. For example, he had been involved in Rochester’s Hattie Elliott case in 1891, and the infamous Lizzie Borden case in 1892. He was remembered in 1923 as a having been a celebrated toxicologist and medico-legal expert.


The Test Results

Professor Woods reported back to the coroner that Mrs. Jones had indeed been poisoned.

The Globe EXTRA! 5 O’CLOCK FOUND POISON. Prof. Wood’s Report in Mrs. Jones’ Case; Solid Crystals of Arsenic Discovered in Stomach. The Strange Case at Somersworth. Body Buried Last December Was Exhumed in June, Portions Sent lo Cambridge for Analysis. Son’s Suspicions Well Founded – Coroner Grant Will Act.

SOMERSWORTH, N.H, Dec. 13 – Prof. Wood of Harvard university has made a report to coroner Grant of this city to the effect that he found arsenic in the stomach of Mrs. Sally W. Jones, which was submitted to him for examination some time ago.

Mrs. Jones died at Milton, N.H., last winter. In June her son asked that the body be exhumed and submitted to an examination. After considerable trouble the necessary authority was obtained, the body was disinterred and portions were sent to Cambridge.

When Alfred W. Jones, the son, presented his case before coroner Grant he stated that there had been trouble between his father and mother over some property. Other circumstances, which the son considered suspicious, were also referred to.

Mr. Jones was directed by the coroner to present his case to County Solicitor Nason. Mr. Nason, however, after hearing Mr. Jones’ story, declined to take up the case.

Mr. Jones then went to Atty. Gen. Eastman, who granted the man’s petition. The body, which had been buried in December, was taken up in June.

Coroner Grant did not go into the case further than to remove the parts which it was desired should be submitted to expert examination.

Prof. Wood’s report has just been made known. He states that in the stomach and intestines he found solid arsenic crystals. The poison, he states, was administered before death, and its presence could not be due to the use of embalming fluid.

Coroner Grant will communicate the finding of Prof. Wood to County Solicitor Nason. It is expected that steps will be taken at once to bring about the arrest of the person of whom Alfred Jones is suspicious (Boston Globe, December 13, 1897).


The Son Accused

DUE TO POISON. Arsenic in the Stomach of Mrs. Sally W. Jones. Prof. Wood Reports to the Coroner. Son Alfred Had the Body Exhumed. Woman Died at Home in Milton, N.H. Husband and Father, William, Tells of Family Row. Makes Serious Charges Against the Son. Coroner Grant to Consult with County Attorney.

SOMERSWORTH, N.H., Dec 13. The receipt today by coroner L. E. Grant of the report of Prof Edward S. Wood of Cambridge on the. analysis of the stomach and intestines of Mrs. Sally W. Jones, who died under suspicious circumstances at her home in Milton. Dee 5. 1896, has aroused fresh interest in the alleged poisoning case, both here and in Milton.

The case is expected to develop many sensational features from the fact that Prof. Wood’s analysis shows that the stomach and intestines contained arsenic, in crystalline form in considerable quantities, as well as in solution. and that it was probably administered before death.

Prof. Wood has been at work upon the analysis since last June. He writes that much time has been consumed in distinguishing between the arsenic crystals taken into the stomach before death and the poisonous solution used in embalming the body.

Coroner to Act.

Coroner Grant says that Prof. Wood’s analysis practically removes all doubt that Mrs. Jones’ death resulted from poisoning. In addition to this he has it on the authority of the undertaker that no arsenic was used by him in preparing the body for burial. He says the authorities now have a duty on their hands to find how this poison was administered and by whom. He will tomorrow consult with County Solicitor Nason in reference to holding an inquest.

Coroner Grant today notified Alfred W. Jones of Milton, son of the dead woman, that he had received Prof. Wood’s report.

It was at the urgent solicitation of Alfred that the body was exhumed last June, and the examination made and he furnished the funds necessary for conducting the examination. The result is of such a nature, however, that the authorities will probably make a thorough investigation of the case whether Alfred cares to proceed further with it or not.

Alfred has talked much about the affair, and has repeatedly asserted that he knew his mother was poisoned. He is alleged to have pointed the finger of suspicion at his father, William Jones, and then at his sister, who resides in Farmington and at whose house Mrs. Jones first became sick with symptoms of poisoning. The people of Milton, however, entertain no suspicion against either William Jones or his daughter.

Neighbors have said that Alfred had in his possession at his home a large cabinet containing many poisonous drugs, which was given him a number of years ago by Dr. Jenkins. who lived with him and who afterward committed suicide.

Story Told by Jones Sr.

William Jones, the father, tells an interesting story of a family quarrel.

He said in an interview tonight: “On Oct 5, 1896, my wife and I drove to Rochester to prepare her pension papers. She was receiving pension of $12 a month. Before leaving she drew $50 from the bank and paid the last penny of debt on the homestead. We then started on a drive to Farmington to visit our daughter, Mrs. Prescott.

“On the way our carriage was struck by a train at a crossing. and both of us were thrown out and quite severely hurt. Regaining our senses and our carriage we managed to get to Farmington, where Sally was laid up for several days.

“In two days I was able to return home, and then I was taken suddenly ill. The doctor told me I could not recover. While confined to my bed Alfred’s wife came to visit me and told me that mother was growing worse at Farmington, and had had a Rochester lawyer draw up her will, bequeathing the property to me, Alfred to be the administrator and to take care of me.

“When my wife returned she said that Alfred and his wife had visited her. and that a little while after they left she was taken sick and suffered much pain, and she believed Alfred’s wife [Ella S. (Kimball) Jones] hated her and had tried to poison her.

“On the Saturday my wife died my daughter, who was caring for her, came from the sick room and said her mother was very sick and in great distress. Alfred and his wife were at the house and remained in the room with her while my daughter ate dinner with the rest of the household.

“When I went into the room I found

Continued on the Second Page.

DUE TO POISON.

Continued from the First Page.

my wife very sick, and I told the hired man to go for Dr. Hart. As soon as he started Alfred called him back, saying it would be of no use, for nothing could be done to save her.

“Alfred was ransacking my wife’s chest, in which she kept her money, deeds and other papers and valuables. While he was there at work I again ordered the man to go for Dr. Hart, and he arrived a few minutes before my wife died. Alfred was much surprised when the doctor came in.

Missed All Valuables.

“I tried to prevent Alfred from opening the chest and trouble ensued. In spite of this he got possession of the papers and held them while he tried to make the almost dead woman recognize him.

“After Alfred had left the house I got Selectman J.A. Avery to witness my examination of the chest. I missed from it $450 worth of diamonds, presented to us by my son Joseph, who is a sailor; the deeds of our property, insurance and money and jewelry to the value of $1100. Everything of value Alfred had taken.

“I asked him to return the stolen valuables. He became excited and said be did not steal them, claiming that his mother had made a will and appointed him administrator, by virtue of which he had the right to take everything that belonged to her. I told him that she had burned the will on her arrival home and that Mrs. Pillsbury was a witness to the act. Alfred said he knew better and he refused to give up the property.

“He then charged me with having poisoned my wife. The accusation nearly prostrated me. Alfred had had trouble with his sister, Mrs. Prescott, and he also accused her of poisoning her mother.

“Alfred attended the funeral, but refused to go to the cemetery and see his mother buried. After the funeral he wanted me to come and live with him, but I declined. He insisted and grew angry, but I refused and said to him: ‘My son, you have already robbed me, but I shall take care that you do not kill me.’

“He then tried to stir up the people and fasten the crime on me. I was at first greatly alarmed, but when they heard my story and that of other members of the family, they began to pity me. At this turn of public feeling Alfred began his efforts to have the body exhumed and examined. He applied to the selectmen, but did not succeed. He afterward got permission from the county authorities to have this done.”

Mrs. Jones was 74 at the time of her death. Her husband was 71 in November. He has consulted counsel, and intends to take legal action toward recovering the property from his son (Boston Globe, December 14, 1897).


The Trial

The trial of Alfred W. Jones took place in the Strafford County courthouse in Dover, NH.

Strafford County CourthouseFATHER AGAINST SON. Wm. Jones Testifies as to Alfred’s Conduct While Mother Was Dying. Prof. Wood Tells of His Finding Arsenic in Body of Mrs. Sally W. Jones, the Wife and Mother, of Milton, N.H, and of the Respondent’s Requests, Both Written and Oral, Bearing Upon the Examination.

DOVER, N.H. Jan. 3. Slow progress has been made by the state for the first day of the hearing in the case against Alfred W. Jones of Milton, charged with causing the death of his mother, Sally W. Jones, by giving her poison mixed in her medicine, in the early part of December 1896, but enough has been made to show that the defense will fight every inch of the ground in its effort to clear the respondent.

In his opening argument this morning County Solicitor Nason said that the state was prepared to show a motive for the crime and an opportunity to commit it on the part of Alfred W. Jones. The motive attributed to him was the desire to acquire the property held by his mother, and the opportunity lay in his having free access to the rooms of his parents’ home at any and all times.

To show that he made use of that opportunity the solicitor said the state would put in evidence the purchase of 12 horse powders containing 3½ grains each from an Exeter veterinary in the summer of 1896; that Sally Jones was sick with symptoms of poisoning not long afterward, and that on the morning of Dec 3, the day she was taken with her last sickness, Alfred, after making an early trip to Rochester to get a load of piping for a tenement, went to his father’s house, where he remained two hours and had access to all the rooms.

This circumstance, he said, would be shown in connection with the fact that between 2 and 3 in the afternoon, after taking medicine prepared by Dr. Pillsbury for her, Mrs. Jones was taken with violent sickness, and she died on the evening of the second day following.

Motive and Opportunity.

The principal feature of the evidence showing a motive on Alfred’s part, Mr. Nason said, would be his dictating to a Rochester lawyer his mother’s will, which she signed while she was at Farmington in October, 1896, very sick from injuries she received in a carriage accident at Places Crossing, the provisions of which made him the sole owner of her property at the death of her husband who was to receive the income from it during his natural life, Alfred in the meantime to be the administrator of the estate.

That Alfred had in mind this will at he time of his mother’s death the solicitor said the state would show, that he had made statements concerning his coming into possession of the property both to his father and to a neighbor, and that on the evening his mother died he obtained possession of the keys to her triple-locked private chest and removed her money, valuable papers and diamonds, and remarked to his sister, Mrs. Prescott, who was present, that he could not find the will.

It would also be shown, he said, that Alfred was ignorant of the fact that after Mrs. Jones had recovered from the accident she had had the will read to her and had then destroyed it.

This, in addition to the finding of arsenic in the stomach and intestines of Mrs. Jones, comprises briefly the case which the state will endeavor to prove against Alfred Jones.

During the time solicitor Nason was speaking Jones was an attentive listener, but not a shade of expression of nervousness or more than ordinary interest flitted over his face. He was easily the calmest person in the packed court room.

Alfred’s father, William Jones, was among the large gathering of witnesses, and Milton citizens, who had come down to hear the proceedings, but the eyes of father and son did not meet. Both seemed oblivious of the other’s presence.

At the afternoon session, however, when William Jones took the stand, the two men gazed at each other, but the

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FATHER AGAINST SON.

Continued from the First Page.

gaze of each was cold and expressionless.

Alfred showed his appreciation of the presence of his acquaintances by shaking hands with them all at the close of the morning session.

By request of the defendant’s counsel the court ruled that the state’s witnesses be excluded from the court room while the states side was being put in, and only one witness was present at a time. This was asked for the purpose of preventing these witnesses getting the drift of the cross-examination.

Prof. Wood Testifies.

The first witness called was Prof. Edward S. Wood of the Harvard medical school. He testified:

“I received last June a jar containing the stomach and intestines of Sally W. Jones, with instructions to analyze them for the presence of arsenic, I found in the intestines one-half grain of white arsenic.

“If arsenic were administered one day at noon and the person died the next day the conditions would be the same as found. All the arsenic that had been administered would not be found, in such an examination as I made. In the present case the vomiting would throw off the major portion of the white arsenic. I could not tell whether arsenic caused Mrs. Jones’ death until further examination, but the symptoms described would indicate that.”

Witness said he had received three letters from Alfred W. Jones. Lawyer Crowley objected to the letters going in as evidence until they were identified as being in Jones’ handwriting, and James A. Edgerly was called and testified that they were written by the same hand, that of Alfred Jones. The court then allowed the letters to he introduced.

The first one read was dated June 23, 1897. It asked whether Prof Wood had found arsenic in the body of Mrs. Jones, and stated that if he had it might lead to the discovery of another important poisoning case.

The second letter read inquired as to the cost of examining the stomach of Mrs. Jones. It stated the conditions under which she died, and closed by saying that the writer believed his mother had been poisoned by her husband or youngest daughter.

The third letter was dated April 5, 1897, and in it the professor was asked whether he supposed the embalming of the body would prevent his finding arsenic, and contained the words. “We feel quite sure that there was a second dose of poison given between the dates mentioned. We think it was rat poison. I feel quite sure you will find poison. The symptoms were those that appeared in the case of Sylvester Kimball, who worked on the Learoyd farm.”

Kimball Case Referred To.

On the cross-examination Prof. Wood stated that Jones also came to see him toward the close of his examination.

Lawyer Crowley asked permission to question the witness regarding his finding poison in the stomach of Sylvester Kimball. Solicitor Nason objected on the ground that there was no evidence before the court of any other case of poisoning and that such questioning would be irrelevant.

A long discussion followed, in which the defense stated that in order to explain Jones’ apparent knowledge of his mother’s poisoning it was necessary to show that he was familiar with the circumstances connected with the Learoyd poisoning case, the very knowledge of these coming home to him and exciting his suspicions as to the way in which his mother came to her death, and that in order to make competent this evidence it would be necessary to bring out the fact that Sylvester Kimball had been poisoned. The state’s objection was finally sustained.

The cross-examination then went into the effects of arsenical poisoning.

“It takes from two to two and one-half grains of arsenic to cause death.” said Prof Wood; “that is, it must be absorbed into the system, not merely swallowed. Arsenic taken into an empty stomach would show its symptoms soon. I cannot say that in my examination I found evidence of slow poisoning. I can simply say that I found these crystals.

“The first and only time I saw Jones was early last December. I then told him the examination would be completed in a few days.”

William Jones’ Story.

The next witness was William Jones. husband of Sally W. Jones. He testified:

“I lived with my wife 56 years. We lived alone in Milton for several years before her death. We had four children, three daughters and one son.

“On Oct 5, 1896, my wife and I went to Rochester and drew out of the bank $50, with which to pay off a mortgage. We then started for Farmington to pay the money. While on the way we met with an accident at Place’s crossing. Our horse was a strange one and became frightened at the train, throwing us both out and injuring my wife severely. Her spine was injured and some ribs were broken. I also sustained injuries. We were taken care of at the home of the Robinsons. I was able to return home the next day, but my wife was confined to the bed 10 or 11 days. Dr. Pillsbury attended her.

“After Sally’s return home she gradually recovered and on Dec 3 was about well. She worked about the house and helped tack two quilts. On that day also she superintended the cooking of a chicken for dinner. Alfred came in in the forenoon and stayed an hour and a half. He was accustomed to visit the house at all times of the day. That afternoon about 3 my wife was taken sick and was in great distress with vomiting. Dr. Pillsbury was called.

“Alfred shortly afterward came and remained until Sally died. On the afternoon of that day Alfred said to me, ‘Father, mother is going to die, and now you have got your choice; either you can come and live with me or you must go to the poor farm’.”

Chest Exhibited.

At this point. the chest was shown in which Mrs. Jones kept her valuables. It is a large, square hardwood box, cushioned on top to be used as a divan. In it is a small box or chest of inlaid wood, having a triple lock. In this was kept the property.

William Jones continued: “When mother was dying Alfred asked for the keys to the chests. My daughter, Mrs. Prescott, gave them to him. I was in the room at the time, but when I saw him unlock the inner chest I left the room, for I was powerless to hinder his taking the property and could not stay to see it done. He took $58 in money, deeds of the farm, diamonds sent from Bombay to my wife by my absent son, and notes which were held against Alfred by his mother. These notes were for $150 and $210 respectively.”

On cross-examination witness said: “My wife and I lived pleasantly together. My occupation part of the time was burning charcoal. I have employed James A. Edgerly as counsel in proceedings against Alfred concerning the property he has taken, but I have never talked with him about the poisoning and he has never advised me regarding it. Mr. Wentworth of Milton is the administrator of my wife’s estate.

“I had no trouble with Alfred on the day she died. Mrs. Prescott gave me the keys of the chest and Sally’s bank book a few days after she died. I don’t know where the diamonds are. The reason I made no protest when Alfred opened the chest was that I was sick.

“I never used any poison for any purpose, never gave any to a dog, and have never handled what I supposed was poison. I never made any inquiry in reference to the medicine my wife used. I don’t know what her medicine was, or whether she had got through taking it by Dec 3. I cannot say that I saw her boiling chicken on that day. Those who were at dinner then were my wife, myself and my daughter, Mrs. Prescott. William Ham, who occupied an L of the house, came in after dinner and was given by my wife some of the chicken, which he ate.

“When about an hour after dinner I was told that Sally was very sick. I went right into her room and found her in distress. I never used to go into her room much, and was never told to keep out. She was always kind to me and I to her.”

The witness was asked a second time about his always being kind to her, and he made the same reply. Lawyer Crowley made an exclamation of incredulity of the witness’ statement, whereupon solicitor Nason objected.

The witness stated that he could not recollect whether he had ever had any conversation with his wife regarding her property within the hearing of others.

The hearing at this point was continued until 9 a.m. tomorrow (Boston Globe, January 4, 1898).


Hung Jury and Nolle Prosequi

FRED W. JONES DISCHARGED. No Stronger Evidence Discovered Connecting Him With the Death of His Mother at Milton, N.H. DOVER, N.H, Sept 20. The state authorities today dropped the case against Alfred W. Jones of Milton, who was tried at the last term of the supreme court here on a charge of murdering his mother, Mrs. Sally W. Jones, by poisoning. The jury at that time disagreed, and since then no stronger evidence than that put in at the trial has accumulated. It was therefore decided to ask the court to nol pros the case. In the supreme court today, before Judge Wallace, Messrs. Crowley and Kivel, counsel for Jones, moved for trial. County Solicitor Nason, who had charge of the case for the state, made a motion to have the case nol pros’d, which was granted by the court. Judge Wallace then ordered the discharge of Jones’ sureties (Boston Globe, September 20, 1898).


Interlude, with Sheep

William Jones (the Father) died in Milton, June 17, 1899, aged eighty years, seven months, and five days. His cause of death was not, as one might expect from fiction, a broken heart. He died of pyaemia from a carbuncle, i.e., a septic infection.

Alfred W. Jones spent about a year back in Milton. His farm was situated on a cross road, one mile north of the Milton depot. (In 1880, he had been enumerated between the households of Henry Downs and Benjamin W. Foss). He appeared next as the victim of sheep thieves there.

ACCUSED OF SHEEP STEALING. Elmo Grenier of Dover Arraigned and Hearing Fixed for Monday. DOVER, N H. Aug 19 Elmo Grenier of this city, who was arrested last evening on a warrant sworn out by County Solicitor Scott, charging him with stealing three sheep from Alfred W. Jones of Milton, Aug 9, was arraigned before Judge Nason this morning. Grenier pleaded not guilty. He had no counsel and asked for a continuance of the case, which was granted. The hearing was ordered for Monday at 2.30 p.m. and Grenier was held in bail of $500 for appearance at that time. In default be was committed to jail (Boston Globe, August 19, 1899).

ARRESTED FOR SHEEP STEALING. Elmo Grenier was arrested Friday evening on the landing at Dover by patrolmen Caverly and Smith, on the charge of sheep stealing. A warrant had been sworn out for his arrest by County Solicitor Scott, charging him with stealing three sheep valued at $8 from Alfred W. Jones of Milton, Aug. 9. It was issued on information furnished the solicitor by Jones, who told him that Irvin Corson, who worked for him, had confessed to stealing the sheep in company with Grenier. Jones tried to get Corson free from danger of arrest on the ground that the latter had repented and desired to join the church. A warrant has been issued for him, and he has thus far eluded the sheriff. Grenier was seen by Herman Vyth and John McIntire, two marketmen, this evening at the police station, but was not identified as the young man who tried to sell them the stolen sheep. Grenier wept and admitted that he knew Corson and had been with him, but knew nothing about the sheep stealing (Portsmouth Herald, August 19, 1899).

The Census enumerator found the supposedly repentant Irvin Corsen, a farm laborer, aged twenty-four years (b. NH), and Elmo Greenier, no occupation given, aged twenty-eight years (b. Canada)), residing in the Strafford County jail in Dover, NH, in June 1900. They were two of the twenty-nine prisoners there. (The sheriff and his family resided there too).

Alfred W. Jones, a farmer, aged fifty-one years (b. MA), was also imprisoned there.


Back in Jail

Alfred W. Jones had returned to the Strafford County jail, in 1899, but this time for debt. He was still there years later.

The Strafford County jail had a front portion for administration and the sheriff’s residence, and an unusual “Revolving Jail” behind.

Across the River from Washington Square, on top of a hill in the trees, one can see a sturdy brick structure. Presently the home of the McCoole family, this building was built in 1888 as a jailer’s house. Adjacent to it was a most unusual revolving jail which contained 14 cells. The jail building itself could be turned by means of a hand-crank, so that no two cells lined up with the single door at any one time. The intention, presumably quite successful, was to prevent the prisoners from engaging in any conspiracy for escape, The [Revolving] jail was torn down in 1918 in order to obtain scrap for the war effort (From the 1982 Heritage Walking Tour Booklet).

Strafford County Jail
Strafford County Jail & The Revolving Jail (Behind)

HE PREFERS JAIL, A.W. Jones Won’t Take Debtor’s Oath. Milton, N.H, Man Petitioned Court, Then Refused to Appear. DOVER, N.H., May 16. – Alfred W. Jones of Milton, who petitioned the superior court from the Strafford county jail where he has been confined six years for debt, for release from imprisonment, refused at almost the last moment to appear before the commissioners appointed by the court to hear his petition, and so will continue to live behind jail bars. The hearing on the Jones petition was set for today at the county courthouse before Hon. William F. Nason and Robert Doe as commissioners. Jones sent word last evening to his counsel. James McCabe, that he had changed his mind and did not wish to press his application for release. The hearing accordingly did not take place (Boston Globe, May 27, 1905).

Alfred W. Jones, a farmer, aged sixty-one years (b. MA), was still imprisoned in the Strafford County Jail, in Dover, NH, at the time of the Thirteenth (1910) Federal Census (April 25, 1910). By this time, he had spent nearly eleven years there.


New Hampshire State Hospital

NH State Hospital - 1907After nearly twelve years, Alfred W. Jones was transferred from the Strafford County jail to the NH State Hospital, around March 1911. That suggests that debt had become the least of his problems.

Alfred W. Jones, of Milton, NH, died at the NH State Hospital, in Concord, NH, February 5, 1913, aged sixty-four years, three months, and five days. He had been an inmate there for one year, eleven months, and nine days. The cause of death was “suicide by asphyxia (handkerchief in throat),”  with insanity as a contributing cause.


Orestes: You do not see these, but I see them! They hound me on, I cannot stay! (Aeschylus, The Libation Bearers).


References:

Find a Grave. (2019). Dr. Edward Stickley Woods. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/76406589

Scales, John. (1914). History of Strafford County, New Hampshire and Representative Citizens [Hon. William Francis Nason]. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=nGsjAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA781

Wikipedia. (2018, May 23). Erinyes. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erinyes

Wikipedia. (2019, May 15). Lizzie Borden. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lizzie_Borden

Wikipedia. (2017, May 25). Locus in Quo. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Locus_in_quo

Wikipedia. (2019, April 14). New Hampshire State Hospital. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Hampshire_State_Hospital

Wikipedia. (2019, April 17). Nolle Prosequi. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nolle_prosequi

Wikipedia. (2019, May 9). Pyaemia. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyaemia

The Preacher and the Druggist – 1897

By Muriel Bristol | May 23, 2019

Have you heard the one about the preacher and the druggist?

A Milton (N.H.) druggist who considered that he was being persecuted by a minister who alleged that he sold whiskey illegitimately, paid the minister $30 for suppressing criminal prosecution of the druggist. Then the latter had the minister indicted on a charge of blackmail, on which charge he was found guilty (Allison, 1897).


New Hampshire’s Prohibitory Law

In imitation of the so-called Maine Law or Maine Liquor Law of 1850, New Hampshire passed its own state-level alcohol prohibition law in 1855.

New Hampshire’s prohibitory law had some interesting features. It did not prohibit the manufacture of alcohol. (New Hampshire was New England’s largest producer of beer). It did not prohibit either the possession or consumption of alcohol. It only prohibited the sale of alcohol.

Sales of alcohol – for industrial, medicinal, or scientific purposes only – were limited to state-licensed agents, who were usually druggists.

As we have seen in various period news items and documents, this law did not prevent drinking in hotels (1864), or public drunkenness (1875) or drunken deaths by misadventure (1891, 1896, etc.).

It took only a sympathetic physician’s prescription to buy liquor legally from a druggist. (Which sounds a lot like the approach many states have taken in recent years regarding medical marijuana).

Prohibitory laws are themselves noxious in providing a nexus for government intervention, bureaucracy, political favoritism, fanaticism, and corruption, as well as being a drag on the economy and a general nuisance.

The Druggist

Eli Fernald, a whitesmith [i.e., a tinsmith], aged thirty-three years (b. ME), headed a Milton household at the time of the Eighth (1860) Federal Census. His household included Eliza A. [(Felch)] Fernald, aged thirty-six years (b. NH), M.E. Fernald, aged twelve years (b. NH), and Fred Fernald, aged seven months. Sadly, both of these enumerated children, as well as several others before, appear to have died young.

Eli Fernald served as quartermaster sergeant of the First New Hampshire Heavy Artillery Regiment (1864-65) during the civil war. He paid a $1 tax for his watch in the US Excise Tax of 1866.

Frank E. Fernald was born in Boston, MA, in 1866, presumably under a different name (if he had one at all). Eli and Eliza A. Fernald adopted him and brought him home to Milton. Unfortunately, Eli Fernald died of consumption in Milton, September 27, 1869, when Frank would have been only three years of age.

Eliza A. Fernald, keeping house, aged forty-eight years (b. NH), headed a Milton household at the time of the Ninth (1870) Federal Census. Her household included Frank E. Fernald, aged four years (b. NH [SIC]), Joseph H. Duntley, a blacksmith, aged twenty-two years (b. NH), and Betsy J. Whitehouse, aged fourteen years (b. NH).

Frank grew up in Milton. He would have attended his local Milton district school. His entry in the Sixteenth (1940) Federal Census indicates that he completed the eight years that constituted a district school education. (Twenty (62.5%) of the thirty-two adults on his 1940 Milton census page had that much or less. This was standard. A generally younger cohort of nine adults (28.1%) had also an additional one to three years of high school, and three (9.4%) had two to three years of college).

Eliza A. Fernald, keeps house, aged fifty-seven years (b. NH), headed a Milton (“Milton 3-Ponds”) household at the time of the Tenth (1880) Federal Census. Her household included her “adopted son,” Frank E. Fernald, at home, aged fourteen years (b. MA). The census taker enumerated them between the households of George W. Tasker, works in shoe manufactory, aged fifty years (b. NH), and Charles H. Looney, Milton postmaster, aged fifty years (b. NH).

Frank E. Fernald married (1st) in Manchester, NH, March 12, 1890, Sarah Lucy “Lucy” Watson. He was a Milton shoemaker and she a Manchester shoe-stitcher. Rev. Frank Haley of Milton performed the ceremony. She was born in Sandwich, NH, circa 1866-67, daughter of Jeremiah and Harriet E. (Duntley) Watson.

Elisa Fernald appeared in the veterans schedule of the Eleventh (1890) Federal Census, as the widow of veteran Eli Fernald, who had served in the First NH Artillery. She died in Milton, August 22, 1892.

Druggist Benjamin B. Sloan left Milton to sell a patent nostrum after late 1894. Frank E. Fernald and Charles W. Hicks opened their Milton drug store in or around December 1896. (Hicks’ own Wolfeboro drug store had failed a year earlier, in December 1895, leaving liabilities of $8,000 (Haynes, 1895)).

NEW HAMPSHIRE. Milton will have a new drug store conducted under the style of Hicks & Fernald (Engelhard, 1896).

Town Clerk Charles D. Jones kept another Milton drug store. (Milton Mills appears to have had none at that time).

The Preacher

Enter Rev. Fred E. Carver of Milton’s Free-Will Baptist Church. From an early period, ministers of all denominations detested both slavery and alcohol. Slavery had been resolved by the civil war. That left alcohol on which to focus.

Rev. Carver seems to have been absolutely convinced – we cannot now know the truth – that Hicks and Fernald were selling liquor illicitly from their drug store. Carver had several times had the premises searched by the authorities, presumably on a complaint to one or more of Milton’s many justices of the peace.

On the twenty-ninth day of March, eighteen hundred and ninety-seven, [Fernald] not being an agent of any town for the purpose of selling spirit, sold to one whose name he would not reveal, one quart of spirituous liquor, contrary to the form of the statutes in such cases made and provided, unlawfully and for the sake of wicked gain, and without the order and consent of the attorney-general of said state (Knowlton, 1902).

At this point, Hicks may have developed “cold feet.” He sold his interest in the Hicks & Fernald drug store to Fernald and decamped.

NEW ENGLAND. Frank Fernald has purchased Mr. Hicks’ interest in the firm of Hicks & Fernald at Milton, N.H., and will continue the business. Mr. Hicks has returned to his home in Wolfeboro (Allison, August 1897). 

This might have presented a serious problem for Fernald, if it were Hicks that held the druggist license or registration. Here we find him attempting apparently to supply his license deficiency by advertising for a registered druggist to work in his Milton drug store.

Male Help Wanted. DRUG CLERK wanted, reg. in New Hampshire, must be temperate and reliable, steady job for the right man. Apply, with references, to FRANK E. FERNALD, Milton, N H. (Boston Globe, July 8, 1897).

The Composition

It is largely forgotten now that every private citizen has the authority to arrest and even prosecute malefactors (a “citizen’s arrest”). The official police and district attorneys have no more inherent authority than anyone else. What they do have is “qualified immunity,” by which the court system protects them from what Rev. Carver encountered next: a counter prosecution for having exceeded his legitimate authority, i.e., for acting falsely under “color of law.”

It appeared from the evidence for the state that on August 31, 1897, the defendant [Rev. Carver] went to Fernald and informed him that he had a case against him for the illegal sale of liquor; that the defendant read the law to Fernald and told him if he would settle it would save him a good many dollars; that for thirty dollars he would destroy the evidence, which was a bottle of liquor; that he would prosecute unless thirty dollars was paid, and the fine would be fifty dollars and the costs twenty-five dollars; that subsequently Fernald paid him thirty dollars as demanded, and that thereupon the defendant turned the liquor into the sink, gave Fernald the bottle, and wrote and delivered to him a paper a follows: “Milton, N.H., Sept. 2, 1897. This is to certify that I promise to withdraw all further action against Frank E. Fernald for illegal sale of liquor [on] March 29, 1897. F.E. Carver” (Knowlton, 1902).

The Tables Turn

PASTOR ARRESTED. Blackmail Alleged by a Milton Druggist. Latter Said to Have Witnesses to Money Payment. Rev. F.E. Carver Prosecuted Frank Fernald. Latter Swore He Would Get Even for This. Arranged Interview, Overheard by Three Friends.

Carver, FEMILTON, Sept 5. The recent action of Rev. F.E. Carver, pastor of the Free Baptist church of this village, in an effort to prosecute under the liquor law Frank Fernald, a local druggist, has taken an unexpected turn, which has created the profoundest sensation in town. and particularly in social and church circles.

On Saturday a warrant was served on Rev. Mr. Carver, charging him with blackmailing Frank Fernald, the complainant, by promising to desist from prosecuting the latter on a liquor charge on payment of $30, which, it is alleged, was paid to him by Fernald and a receipt given.

The clergyman has had Fernald’s places searched several times in the past, it is stated, but the present case resulted from the seizure, a few days ago, of a half pint of whisky on a search warrant sworn out by Rev. Mr. Carver.

Fernald claimed that the liquor was kept for medicinal purposes, but the clergyman threatened to prosecute him and make him pay the statutory fine of $50 for keeping spirituous liquors for sale.

The matter was not immediately pressed to an issue, and Fernald, it is stated, made advances toward the clergyman in reference to dropping the matter, offering to pay him whatever might be satisfactory. Mr. Carver consulted an attorney, so if is said, as to the matter of dropping the case in the way proposed. The consultation resulted in his deciding to accept the proposition.

An appointment was accordingly made with Fernald to meet him at a hotel in the village and fix the matte up. They met on Friday at the appointed time. Fernald had taken precautions to have witnesses to the transaction, and had three of his friends concealed in the next room where they could see all without being seen by the clergyman.

It is alleged that the hush money, $30 in bank notes, were then paid to Mr. Carver by Fernald and a receipt for the money given. The minister then tore up the liquor warrant.

Fernald had succeeded in accomplishing his purpose of scoring even with Mr. Carver, as he has, it is said, from time to time, boasted he would, and without informing the latter what he intended doing, proceeded at once to Rochester, consulted counsel and swore out a warrant for Carver’s arrest for alleged blackmail. The warrant was served Saturday afternoon and Mr. Carver was notified to appear before the police court at Milton Mills Monday morning.

The clergyman’s friends are greatly exercised over the affair, and seem ready to swear vengeance against the druggist. While they question the propriety of his accepting money for keeping the matter quiet, they say he was innocently entrapped.

Mr. Fernald. on the other hand, says he believes the minister engaged in the work of prosecuting him for what money there was in it, and shows his receipt for $30 as evidence that such was probably the case (Boston Globe, September 6, 1897).

Rev. Carver gave no defense. His attorney admitted the facts, but claimed that Carver lacked any ill intent. Nevertheless, Carver was convicted on a charge of “composition,” i.e., a type of conspiracy. Legal tomes point out that in forgoing prosecution in favor of blackmailing Fernald, Carver had deprived the body politic of its opportunity to exercise its public justice and to collect its fines. That is, he had prevented the government from getting its “pound of flesh” from Fernald. (Assuming Fernald would have been convicted, that is).

The Aftermath

F.E. Fernald appeared as proprietor of a Milton drug store in the Milton Business Directory of 1898 (but not in that of 1901). He left Milton before June 1900 to work in Boston as a foreman for the N.B. Thayer shoe company. (He appears to have retained his deceased parents’ Milton homestead, perhaps as a summer residence).

Frank E. Fernald, a shoe factory foreman, aged thirty-four years (b. MA), headed a Boston, MA, household at the time of the Twelfth (1900) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of nine years), Lucy F. Fernald, aged thirty-four years (b. NH), and his wife’s mother, Harriet E. Watson, a widow, aged seventy-two years (b. NH). They resided at 119 Dale Street.

Rev. Carver left Milton too not long after, i.e., 1900-01. He removed to Fort Fairfield, ME.

New Hampshire repealed its state-level prohibition law in 1903. Its legislature replaced it with a New Hampshire Liquor License Law. Instead of forbidding but with few exceptions, they went over to permitting but with many restrictions.

For example, the following bizarre provision forbid serving mixed drinks, having female servers or store clerks, or felon clerks or servers, or having bars that were not fishbowls.

It shall not be lawful to have adulterated liquors, to have any girl or woman clerk, or anyone who has committed a felony serve liquor, and the bars must be visible from the outside (Portsmouth Herald, March 4, 1903).

So, for purposes of selling or serving liquor, being a woman was functionally equivalent to having been convicted of a felony. It would be impossible to make this up. And so things stood until national prohibition was imposed in 1920.

Fernald in Subsequent Years

Frank E. Fernald was one of only twelve Milton residents to have a private [automobile] operator’s license in 1907 (there were also three chauffeur’s licenses); his automobile was one of the only thirteen to sixteen automobiles (and two motorcycles) registered in town.

Receives Silver Loving Cup. EAST ROCHESTER, N.H, Sept 17. Charles C. Taft, manager of the N.B. Thayer & Co. shoe factory since the company started here, was surprised yesterday by the other officials by the presentation of a silver loving cup. The speech was made by Supt. Frank E. Fernald. Mr. Taft recently resigned as manager to accept a similar position with the Nettleton shoe company of Syracuse, N.Y. Mr. Taft formerly lived in Boston (Boston Globe, September 17, 1907).

NB Thayer Letterhead (S-l1600) - Detail
N.B. Thayer & Company Letterhead, 1909

Frank E. Fernald, a shoe factory superintendent, aged forty-three years (b. MA), headed a Boston, MA, household at the time of the Thirteenth (1910) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of twenty years), Lucy Fernald, aged forty-two years (b. NH), and his mother-in-law, Harriet E. Watson, a widow, aged eighty-two years (b. NH). They resided in a six-unit apartment building at 312 Warren Street.

The Boston Directory of 1911 listed Fernald, Frank E., supt., h. 312 Warren, Rox. [i.e., Roxbury, a district of Boston].

Frank E. Fernald, of Milton, NH, and Sarah Lucy Fernald, of Roxbury, MA, divorced in Strafford County Superior Court, November 1, 1910. He accused her of so treating him as to seriously impair his health. (One had to allege something).

The Boston City Directory of 1912 listed Frank E. Fernald, as having rem. to E. Rochester, N.H. It did list his wife, S. Lucy Fernald, milliner, at 313A Warren, i.e., she remained behind in Roxbury, MA, at least for a while.

Frank E. Fernald married (2nd) in Rochester, NH, April 17, 1912, Lulu A. Tuttle, he of Milton and she of Farmington. He was a divorced shoe factory superintendent, aged forty-six years (b. Boston), and she a houseworker, aged thirty-four years (b. Farmington). Frank H. Libby, of Rochester, clergyman, performed the ceremony. She was born in Farmington, NH, September 16, 1875, daughter of Charles E. and Justina (Ham) Tuttle.

Frank E. Fernald received a patent (Number 1,094,546), April 28, 1914, for an “Apparatus for Use in the Manufacture of Boots and Shoes.” He assigned it to the United Shoe Manufacturing Company (Haag, 1914).

CHANGES IN SUPERINTENDENTS AND FOREMEN. Mr. McMurray, superintendent of N.B. Thayer, E. Rochester, has given up his position and has accepted a similar one with Tapley & Marston, Danvers, Mass. He will be succeeded by J.B. Hill of Brockton. Mr. Frank Fernald, the former superintendent, is at the factory for a short time, having fully recovered from his sickness. Mr. McMurray was formerly superintendent for W.H. McElwain in their Newport factory (McLeish, 1916). 

CHANGES IN SUPERINTENDENTS AND FOREMEN. Frank Fernald, the well-known superintendent of N.B. Thayer Co., East Rochester, who retired some time ago on account of poor health, is back with this firm as general manager. Mr. Hill is superintendent at present. Mr. Fernald’s many friends are pleased to learn of his permanent recovery from his illness (McLeish, 1917).

Frank E. Fernald and Harry Y. Nute, of Milton, applied for a patent on an innersole design on March 18, 1918.

1,324,390. INNERSOLE. FRANK E. FERNALD, HARRY Y. NUTE, Milton, N.H. Filed Mar. 18, 1918. Serial No. 223,224. 1 Claim. (Cl. 36-22). An inner sole comprising a base layer, a marginal fabric rib stitched longitudinally medially thereof to the base to provide free edge portions at opposite sides of the stitch and having one face thereof adhesively coated to permit the connection of the opposite edge portions thereof together when folded, the edge portions of the rib when folded being connected by a single row of stitching extending longitudinally thereabout through said edge portions, and a reinforcing stiff fabric on said base and having its edge and lower adjacent marginal portions adhesively connected with the inner edge portion of the rib and the base layer (US Patent Office, 1920).

Harry Yeaton Nute was born in Milton Mills, March 28, 1875, son of John S. and Emma (Morse) Nute.

Frank E. Fernald, a farmer (small farm), aged fifty-three years (b. MA), headed a Wells, ME, household at the time of the Fourteenth (1920) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Lulu A. Fernald, aged forty-four years (b. NH), and his boarder, George Ham, aged forty-two years (b. NH). They resided on Kennebunk Road.

Frank E. Fernald, a shoe factory superintendent, aged sixty-four years (b. MA), headed a Rochester, NH, household at the time of the Fifteenth (1930) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Lulu A. Fernald, aged fifty-four years (b. NH), and his brother-in-law, George Ham, aged fifty-one years (b. NH). They resided at 28 Main Street and did have a radio set.

East Rochester Notes. Mr. and Mrs. Frank Fernald of Milton, N.H., called on friends in town yesterday. Mr. Fernald is a retired shoe executive and for many years was connected with the N.B. Thayer Shoe company here (Portsmouth Herald, December 6, 1941).

Frank E. Fernald, retired, aged seventy-four years (b. MA), headed a Milton, NH, household at the time of the Sixteenth (1940) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Lulu A.J. Fernald, aged sixty-three years (b. NH), and his brother-in-law, George Ham, aged sixty-two years (b. NH). They owned their home on Main Street (“Milton Community”), which was valued at $2,500.

Frank E. Fernald died in Milton, NH, December 14, 1944. Rev. Fred E. Carver died in Portland, ME, August 29, 1948.


Prohibition would be all right if it prohibited anything except the sale of good liquor – Portsmouth Herald, February 8, 1903


Mr. S.D. Plissken contributed to this article.


References:

Allison, William O. (1897, August). Druggists Circular and Chemical Gazette. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=Dk0xAQAAMAAJ&pg=PR83

Allison, William O. (1897, October). Druggists Circular and Chemical Gazette. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=Dk0xAQAAMAAJ&pg=PR107

Find a Grave. (2016, April 17). Charles W. Hicks. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/161206405

Find a Grave. (2015, August 8). Frank E. Fernald. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/150356638

Find a Grave. (2013, November 9). Fred E. Carver. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/120061681

Haag, Haag, and Haag. (1914, June). Shoe and Leather Facts. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=gNM-AQAAMAAJ&pg=RA4-PA37

Haynes, D.O. and Company. (1895). Pharmaceutical Era. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=WrzmAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA761

Knowlton, Jerome C. (1902). Cases on Criminal Law. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=KBw0AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA309&lpg=PA309

McLeish Communications. (1916, November 4). American Shoemaking. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=m-scAQAAMAAJ&pg=RA4-PA25

McLeish Communications. (1917). American Shoemaking. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=RuscAQAAMAAJ&pg=RA10-PA25

Sanborn, Josiah B. (1900). The New Hampshire Reports (State vs. Carver). Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=njdQAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA2

US Patent Office. (1920). Official Gazette of the US Patent Office. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=_stRAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA265

Engelhard, G.F., and Company. (1896, December). Western Druggist. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=C9DnAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA578

Wikipedia. (2019, May 19). Maine Law. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maine_law

Wikipedia. (2019, May 12). Neal Dow. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neal_Dow

Wikipedia. (2019, May 19). Prohibition in the United States. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prohibition_in_the_United_States

Concord Beat – May 2019

By Ian Aikens | May 21, 2019

I’ve been going to Concord almost every week for the last two months to give my two cents worth in public hearings on various bills making the rounds in the state legislature, I thought it might be interesting to see how Milton’s representatives measure up.  Forget the grandstanding and rhetoric one normally hears before elections – it’s only their actual votes on actual bills that count in assessing their records.

When I look at legislators’ voting records, I’m looking to see if they respect individual rights and if they treat their constituents like adults or children.  Are they voting for bills that put ever more laws on the books?  Are they voting for bills that make goods and services more expensive?  Are they voting for bills that make it harder to start a new business due to onerous regulation and fees?  Do their votes reflect that their constituents can decide how to conduct their own lives or do they need supervision from politicians to make the “right” decisions?  Do their votes reflect “Live and let live” or “There ought to be a law …”?

I looked at a varied range of current 2019 bills to get a rounded, comprehensive picture of Milton’s representatives’ records.  Milton’s House representatives are Abigail Rooney and Peter Hayward, and both were elected for the first time last November.  I am pleased to report that their records are quite good.  Generally, they have been mindful of their constituents’ pocketbooks and not into micromanaging their lives with meddlesome “feel good” laws that create more problems than they solve.  Both Rooney and Hayward have tended to vote the same way on almost all of the bills.  Here’s a sampling of their actual votes.

TAXES / SPENDING:

CACR11 – This bill would have prohibited a sales tax, but it was tabled in the House.  Both Rooney and Hayward voted against the tabling, so presumably that means they supported the bill.

CACR12 – This bill would have prohibited an income tax on earned income, but it was voted down by the House.  Both Rooney and Hayward voted against “Inexpedient to Legislate,” so presumably that means they supported the bill.

HB680 – This bill would have enacted a 65.03% tax – yes, you read that right – on vaping products, but I was at the committee hearing on this one, and there was a lot of pushback, so the bill was retained in a committee.  Both Rooney and Hayward voted against this bill.

HB686 – This bill would have added a capital gains tax to the interest and dividends tax that the politicians are still saying is not an income tax.  Both Rooney and Hayward voted against it.

HB2 – The House-passed budget of $12.9 billion, which includes $417 million of new taxes more than the governor’s budget, garnered a NO vote from both Rooney and Hayward.

SECOND AMENDMENT:

HB564 – This bill passed in the House already and will make it against the law to carry a firearm on school grounds, unless school authorities give one permission to carry a firearm.  (Will the deranged who perpetuate school shootings be requesting permission as required?)  As you might expect, of all the hearings I testified at, this one attracted the most attention, and the room was filled to the gills.  Both Rooney and Hayward voted against the bill.

HB109 – This bill passed in the House already and mandates background checks for commercial sales of firearms.  (Will background checks nab the criminals who get their firearms from the black market?)  Both Rooney and Hayward voted against this bill.

HB514 – This bill, which passed in the House already, mandates a 7-day waiting period between the purchase and delivery of firearms.  Again, I doubt the crazies and criminals will bother following the law on this one either.  Both Rooney and Hayward voted NO on this one.

EMPLOYMENT ISSUES:

HB186 – This bill, which passed in the House, will increase the minimum wage in stages, up from the current $7.25/hour to $12.00/hour by the beginning of 2022.  Most economists say minimum wages hurt those on the bottom of the economic scale the most because it denies the unskilled the opportunity to gain marketable skills, but evidently many politicians like to feel that they’re “doing something” to help the downtrodden.  Also, minimum wage mandates do nothing to increase the purchasing power of the downtrodden because the cost increases make goods and services more expensive.  Both Rooney and Hayward voted NO on this one.

HB211 – This bill would prohibit employers from inquiring about salary history prior to an offer of employment.  The House approved the bill, and it is now in a Senate committee.  This bill treats employees like children who need protection from Big Bad Employers – shouldn’t it be between the employee and employer to figure out how much information each wants to share?  Hayward voted against this bill, and Rooney did not vote on this one for some reason.

HB253 – This bill would have made it against the law to inquire about a potential employee’s criminal background prior to an interview.  It also passed in the House and is now in a Senate committee.  The obvious goal here is to give felons a better chance to become gainfully employed after incarceration – a worthwhile goal – but wouldn’t it be better to have less laws on the books so there would be less felons struggling to rebuild their lives?  Especially in the case of victimless crimes.  Hayward voted NO, and Rooney did not vote on this one for some reason.

HB293 – This bill, which would prohibit employers from asking potential employees about their credit history during the hiring process, passed in the house with a voice vote.  There was a motion to table the bill but it failed.  While some people with bad credit still make excellent employees (and others with great credit end up not being such great employees), it might still be another helpful tool for an employer to determine if the employee is right for the company.  More important, it should be up to the employee to decide if he/she wants to consent to releasing their credit info, not busybody politicians with threats of civil penalties sticking their noses where they don’t belong. Hayward voted to table the bill, and Rooney was absent on that vote.

NANNY STATISM:

HB558 – This bill, which passed in the House but fortunately died in the Senate, would have made it against the law to give a customer a plastic straw unless he/she requested it.  The state would have been authorized to hire a “straw cop” to “provide enforcement, outreach and education” to the tune of around $100K per year.  Both Rooney and Hayward voted against this nonsense.

HB560 – This bill, which passed in the House and looks like it will make it through the Senate and become a law, will ban single-use plastic bags and mandate no less than a dime charge for each recycled plastic or paper bag stores give their customers.  I hail from California, where most of this silliness comes from, and I can assure you that it’s just a big nuisance for consumers and does nothing to make this a cleaner world.  First of all, it starts with a dime per bag, but believe me, that can and does increase.  Some counties in California are now charging a quarter per bag, and I’m sure that will increase, like everything else in California.  Second, people still like to use plastic bags because they are convenient, so banning stores from giving them out free only caused people to buy them in bulk for use at home.  So, plastic bag usage did not go down – the mandate only added an extra cost to consumers.  Then there’s the carbon cost of the reusable bags that people start bringing into stores to avoid the 10 and 25 cent charges – there’s a whole lot of “carbon footprint” that goes into producing those bags, not to mention that they have to be washed periodically.  Both reps voted NO on this bill.

Interestingly, there were three bills where Rooney and Hayward voted differently.  HB628, which would have mandated universal changing stations for people with physical disabilities in all places of public accommodation (constructed after 01-01-2021) that serve 1,500 people or more per day, passed in the House and is currently being considered by the Senate.  It is reasonable to require all government buildings to adhere to such standards, since all taxpayers in one way or another pay for government buildings, but forcing all private businesses to go to this extra expense is unnecessary in most cases, since most businesses already want to attract more customers.  Rooney voted against this mandate, and Hayward voted for it.

HB480, which passed in the House and looks like it will pass in the Senate, would allow legal sports betting.  Another laudable goal, since people should be able to spend their hard-earned money any way they want (and if those few who become addicted and mortgage away the house, let them suffer the consequences, not everyone else who enjoys a harmless pastime without excess), but this bill is a classic example of “crony capitalism.”  It limits the number of places that would be allowed to host such events to 10 and is extremely regulation-heavy, not to mention setting up a new “Council for Responsible Gambling” and hiring 9 new permanent government bureaucrats.  Citizens would be better served by just decriminalizing the activity and letting the market develop freely without all the micromanagement – and not limiting the competition.  Rooney opposed it, and Hayward voted for the bill.

Lastly, HB632, which would have eliminated the educational tax credit program, was tabled in the House overwhelmingly by members of both parties.  The program currently serves hundreds of low- and middle-income families who are able to choose non-government schools that better serve their children with voluntary contributions from individuals and businesses allowed to deduct the contributions as a credit on their BPT, BET, and I&D tax returns.  Keeping the current program in place seems like a win-win-win situation to me – better schools for those unable to afford private schools, less students for government schools to educate poorly, and less money for the government to waste—but perhaps Hayward viewed the situation differently, as Rooney voted to table the bill and Hayward voted not to table the bill.

All in all, I think both representatives have done a reasonable job so far in keeping the heavy hand of government on the lighter side.  Next time, I’ll take a look at Jeb Bradley, Milton’s State Senator, and see what his voting record looks like.


Next in sequence: Concord Beat – Early July 2019


References:

Legiscan. (2019). NH Legislation | 2019 | Regular Session. Retrieved from  legiscan.com/NH

The Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy. (2019). Budget Visions:  2020-21. Retrieved from jbartlett.org/wp-content/uploads/Budget-Visions-2020-21-4.pdf

Blackfly Song

By Muriel Bristol | May 20, 2019

The blackflies made their annual reappearance last week. Wednesday (May 15) at my house). That fits pretty well with their traditional schedule of between Mothers’ Day and Fathers’ Day.

Last year, we provided both a general description (Black Flies Return) and a folk remedy for their itching bites (Hot Water for Itchy Bug Bites).

That having been covered already, the following Canadian folk song – Blackfly Song – as sung in 1955 by its author Wade Hemsworth, might give some sense of the joy that is blackfly season.

We are not facing them in the woods of North Ontario, thankfully, but their Milton cousins are fierce enough, thank you.

Blackfly Song

‘Twas early in the spring when I decide to go
For to work up in the woods in North Ontar-i-o;
And the unemployment office said they’d send me through
To the Little Abitibi with the survey crew
And the black flies, the little black flies,
Always the black fly no matter where you go;
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones,
In North Ontar-i-o-i-o, in North Ontar-i-o.

And the man Black Tobey was the captain of the crew
And he said, I’m gonna tell you boys, what we’re gonna do:
They want to build a power dam; we must find a way
For to make the Little Ab flow around the other way
With the black flies, the little black flies,
Always the black fly no matter where you go;
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones,
In North Ontar-i-o-i-o, in North Ontar-i-o.

So we survey to the east, survey to the west,
Couldn’t make our minds up how to do it best;
Little Ab, Little Ab, what shall I do?
I’m all but goin’ crazy with the survey crew
And the black flies, the little black flies,
Always the black fly no matter where you go;
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones,
In North Ontar-i-o-i-o, in North Ontar-i-o.

It was blackfly, blackfly, everywhere,
A-crawlin’ in your whiskers, crawlin’ in your hair;
Swimmin’ in the soup, swimmin’ in the tea,
And the devil take the blackfly, let me be.
Black flies, the little black flies,
Always the black fly no matter where you go;
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones,
In North Ontar-i-o-i-o, in North Ontar-i-o.

Black Tobey fell to swearin’; the work went slow,
The state of our morale was a-gettin’ pretty low;
The flies swarmed heavy; hard to catch your breath,
As you staggered up and down the trail a-talkin’ to yourself
With the black flies, the little black flies,
Always the black fly no matter where you go;
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones,
In North Ontar-i-o-i-o, in North Ontar-i-o.

Well now, the bull cook’s name was Blind River Joe,
If it hadn’t been for him we’d ‘ve never pulled through;
‘Cause he bound up our bruises and he kidded us for fun,
And he lathered us with bacon grease and balsam gum.
And the black flies, the little black flies,
Always the black fly no matter where you go;
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones,
In North Ontar-i-o-i-o, in North Ontar-i-o.

And at last the job was over; Black Tobey said we’re through
With the Little Abitibi and the survey crew!
‘Twas a wonderful experience and this I know:
I’ll never go again to North Ontar-i-o
With the black flies, the little black flies,
Always the black fly no matter where you go;
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones,
In North Ontar-i-o-i-o, in North Ontar-i-o.

And the black flies, the little black flies,
Always the black fly no matter where you go;
I’ll die with the black fly a-pickin’ my bones,
In North Ontar-i-o-i-o, in North Ontar-i-o.

References:

Wikipedia. (2018, December 14). Little Abitibi River. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Abitibi_River

YouTube. (2015, May 20). Blackfly Song. Retrieved from www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIzw1j4onNc

Milton in the News – 1896

By Muriel Bristol (Transcriber) | May 19, 2019

In this year, we encounter an offer of a good home, a flood at the Spaulding homestead, the Lynn death of a Milton native, a troubled Amesbury shoe factory considering a move, a first-class cook wanted, the suspicious death of a traveler, non-union lasters being both wanted and warned away, and a drowning death.

(Milton Mills got a telephone exchange and its first telephones in this year. Milton did not get their first ones until 1898).


Male Help Wanted. WANTED – A boy about 15 or 16 years in want of a good home for the winter for board, chores on a small farm. Apply G.G., Milton Mills, N.H. (Boston Globe, January 6, 1896).

A boy of this age would have completed already his district school education. No pay is mentioned here, but “chores” are not a full-time job. The boy in question would be free to supplement this room-and-board offer with paid work elsewhere.


Townsend, MA, was the ancestral home of the Spaulding family. Here we find the Townsend house of Jonas Spaulding, Jr., suffering some flood damage. Jonas Spaulding, Jr., was the father in the J. Spaulding & Sons leatherboard manufacturing partnership.

TOWNSEND HARBOR. Many of the cellars of this village have been flooded this week, but, aside from this, little damage has been done hereabouts. The pond is as solidly frozen as any time this winter. The Conant House, recently occupied by Mr. Stackpole, was sold at auction Saturday. The property of the father of Spaulding brothers in Milton, N.H., was damaged several hundred dollars by the flood. Harry Wright, late with Frank Knight, is still at his home in Hudson, badly broken up, physically. He is not likely to be [- indistinct -] this season (Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, MA), March 6, 1896).

Leatherboard is made from a pulp of scrap leather and wood pulp. J. Spaulding & Sons, later Spaulding Brothers, had factories in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire, including those in Milton and East Rochester. (Later, their largest factory would be established in Tonawanda, NY).

Two of the three Spaulding sons would go on to become governors of New Hampshire. Rochester’s Spaulding High School and the Spaulding Turnpike are named after them.


War Veteran Dies. LYNN, March 12. William Cook, 61, a war veteran, died today. He was born at Milton, N.H, enlisted for three months at Haverhill in the 8th regiment at the beginning of the war, and when his term had expired reenlisted in the 4th Massachusetts volunteers. He was a member of Washington lodge of Masons of Windsor, Conn., and of Gen. Lander post, 5, G.A.R., Lynn (Boston Globe, March 13, 1896).

William P. Cook was born in Milton, NH, April 26, 1834, son of William W. and Mary M. (Yeaton) Cook.

William W. Cook, a farmer, aged fifty-two years (b. NH), headed a Milton household at the time of the Seventh (1850) Federal Census. His household included Mary Cook, aged forty-eight years (b. NH), George H. Cook, a shoemaker, aged eighteen years (b. NH), William P. Cook, a shoemaker, aged sixteen years, Mary E. Cook, aged thirteen years (b. NH), Mark F. Cook, aged nine years (b. NH), Ira Cook, aged six years (b. NH), and Charles E. Cook, aged four years (b. NH). William W. Cook had real estate valued at $1,000. Their household appeared in the enumeration between those of Elias S. Cook, a farmer, aged thirty-six years (b. NH), and Joseph Pearl, a farmer, aged years. They lived also quite close (same page) to the household of John T.G. Colby, a Christian B. [Baptist] Clergyman, aged fifty-four years (b. NH). Note too the child Mark F. Cook, who was likely a namesake for Elder Mark Fernald.

William P. Cook married (1st) in Lynn, MA, September 5, 1858, Margaret E. Rand, both of Lynn, MA. He was a cordwainer, aged twenty-four years (b. Milton, NH), and she was a shoe-fitter, aged twenty-two years (b. Europe). It was her second marriage. Rev. H.E. Hempstead performed the ceremony.

Wm. E. Cook, a cordwainer, aged thirty years (b. NH), headed a Lynn, MA, household at the time of the Eighth (1860) Federal Census. His household included Margaret Cook, aged twenty-five years (b. MA), and Charles Cook, aged one year (b. MA). His household shared a two-family dwelling with the household of John P. Watts, a cordwainer, aged thirty-six years (b. NH). (Their son, Charles Herbert Cook, died of scarlet fever in Lynn, MA, May 20, 1863, aged four years).

William P. Cook, a shoemaker, married, aged twenty-nine years (b. NH), registered for the Class I military draft in Lynn, MA, in May or June 1863. “Class I comprises all persons subject to do military duty between the ages of twenty and thirty-five years, and all unmarried persons subject to do military duty above the age of thirty-five years and under the age of forty-five.”

William P. Cook, a shoemaker, aged thirty years (b. NH), and Margaret Cook, a shoe-fitter, aged twenty-seven years (b. NY), resided in the Lynn, MA, household of Thomas B. Wilford, an expressman, aged thirty-seven years (b. Marblehead), at the time of the Second (1865) Massachusetts State Census.

He married (2nd), after 1865, but before 1880, Essie J. Latham. She was born circa 1853.

William P. Cook, a shoemaker, aged forty-five years (b. NH), headed a Lynn, MA, household at the time of the Tenth (1880) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Essie J. Cook, keeping house, aged twenty-seven years (b. England), and his boarder, Florence Rand, works in shoe factory, aged twenty years (b. MA). They resided at 8 Bickford Court.

William P. Cook filed for a Federal invalid veteran’s pension, June 24, 1884, based upon his service in the Fourth Massachusetts H.A. [Heavy Artillery] during the civil war.

William P. Cook of Lynn, MA, appeared in the surviving veterans schedule of the Eleventh (1890) Federal Census. According to that schedule, he had enlisted in Co. D of the Fifth Massachusetts Infantry, in April 1861, and had been discharged in July 1861. He had re-enlisted in Co. L of the Fourth Massachusetts H.A. [Heavy Artillery], in June 1864, and had been discharged in July 1865.

William P. Cook died in Lynn, MA, March 12, 1896, aged sixty-three years, ten months, and sixteen days.

The Lynn City Directory for 1897 listed William P. Cook, died March 12, 1896. It had also listed Mrs. William P. Cook, forewoman stitching, 95 State [Charles H. Ingalls & Co.], h. 16 Warren and Essie J. Cook, h. 16 Warren.

Essie J. Cook filed for a Federal widow’s pension, March 20, 1896, based upon her deceased husband’s service in the Fourth Massachusetts H.A. [Heavy Artillery] during the civil war.

Essie J. (Latham) Cook died in Lynn, MA, in November 1928.


The Massachusetts Department of Labor and Industries chronicled Amesbury’s industries of 1895. The Lewis, Adams, & Co. firm, which was engaged in making slippers, became the Lewis, Gross, & Co. firm. The substitution of Gross for Adams might suggest a new partner with new capital, which might have been necessary if the firm were struggling and financially “embarrassed.”

THE WEEK’S NEWS. FRIDAY, MAY 22. The shoe firm of Lewis Gross & Co., of Amesbury, Mass., will move to Milton Mills, N.H. (Newport Mercury (Newport, RI), May 23, 1896).

Lewis Gross and Co. Make Assignment. AMESBURY, June 6. The slipper firm of Lewis Gross & Co. made an assignment this morning to J.T. Choate, a local attorney. An attachment was served yesterday which they could not meet. No statement is made. It is probable that the firm will resume operations and that the difficulty will be but temporary. This is the firm which was announced last week as being about to move to Milton Mills. N.H., where a factory was being built for them. It is understood, however, that one of the firm is favorable to remaining here and Pres. Chipman of the Merchants’ association and others are laboring to secure their remaining in Amesbury (Boston Globe, June 6, 1896).

An “assignment” is a transfer of asset ownership from a debtor to a creditor.

To Continue Business at Amesbury. AMESBURY, July 20. The slipper firm of Lewis, Gross & Co, which failed here two months ago with liabilities of $30,000, are to continue business here. It was announced this morning that arrangements had been perfected whereby the plant will be sold by the assignee to parties who will, in conjunction with Messrs. Lewis, continue the business. It is further stated that Mr. Gross will retire. Before the firm assigned reports were published that they were to move their business to Milton Mills, N.H, and the fact that they will continue here is hailed with satisfaction (Boston Globe, July 20, 1896).

Hailed with satisfaction in Amesbury, MA, no doubt, although Milton Mills must have been somewhat less satisfied.


The Milton Hotel (or Hotel Milton) advertised for a first-class cook, a female one.

Female Help Wanted. WANTED – To pay $1 per day for first-class cook, steady job. Milton hotel, Milton, N,H. (Boston Globe, June 29, 1896).

Hotel MiltonThe Milton Hotel appeared, under the management of E.M. Bodwell, in the Milton Business Directories of 1894, 1898, 1901, and 1904.

Charles L. Bodwell, a hotel keeper, aged forty-three years (b. ME), headed a Milton household at the time of the Twelfth (1900) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Etta M. Bodwell, aged forty-two years (b. ME), and his son, Linwood C. Bodwell, at school, aged twelve years (b. NH). It would appear that he rented the building from her, which she owned free-and-clear. (More might be found in its census farm schedule).

Seven servants and six boarders resided in the Milton Hotel on that census day in June 1900. Cecile Fritts, house cook, aged twenty-five years (b. MI) was one of the servants. Due to the inflation of the intervening years, her daily wage of $1.00 would have the purchasing power of $30.46 in 2019. (She probably made about $9,503 per year). Of course, there were no income taxes and she appears to have received room and board also.

The poet Louise Bogan (1897-1970) lived as a child in the Milton Hotel (or Hotel Milton) for a few years from 1901. “The hotel faced both the Caricade [Carricabe] Paper Mill and the old flume, a mile-long stretch of very rapid white water dropping nearly a hundred feet over a rocky series of falls” (Frank, 1986). (See also Milton Water Power in 1901).


One might expect the Milton murder of  a traveling stranger to have received more column inches than this did. The authorities seem to have satisfied themselves as to identity of the victim on rather slight circumstantial evidence and a telegraphed description.

WILLIAM O’NEILL, PERHAPS. CLINTON, July 25. – It is thought that the man found murdered at Milton, N.H., July 14, is William O’Neill of this place. He left the Lancaster mills, where he was a weaver, three weeks ago, for Lewiston, Me. (Boston Globe, July 26, 1896).

LETTER MAY FURNISH CLEW. Body Found by Roadside Thought to be That of William O’Neil of Clinton. CLINTON, July 27. There is a general impression here today, based upon information furnished by the police, that the unknown man found murdered by the roadside at Milton, N.H., July 14, is William O’Neil of this town. When the remains were found a letter was discovered in the clothes. addressed to William O’Neil, Clinton, Mass. A description of the man arrived this morning, and those who knew O’Neil say that it fits him exactly. O’Neil was employed at the Lancaster gingham mills for the past three years, and is popular with his associates. John McGrail, with whom Mr. O’Neil boarded, states that he left here three weeks ago for Lewiston, Me. Since then he has heard nothing from him. Mr. McGrail thinks that the murdered man was O’Neil (Boston Globe, July 27, 1896).

There does not seem to have been any subsequent stories of investigations, suspects, arrests or trials. The O’Neill murder case – if that was who he was – seems to have gone “cold.”

(Ed. Note: Milton Vital Records name and explain him as “Unknown,” a white male, aged thirty-five years, who was “Run Over by Train”).


Here we find mention of a second Milton shoe strike. N.B. Thayer & Co. advertised for sixteen shoe lasters, apparently to replace those out on strike.

MALE HELP WANTED. LASTERS wanted. 6 non-union lasters on boys’ shoes, 10 on misses’ and children’s, must be good workmen and responsible men. Apply to 103 Bedford st., Boston, or Milton, N.H. N.B. THAYER & CO.

In the same edition of the same newspaper the union strike committee advertised its request that all shoe lasters stay away from Milton.

LASTERS are requested to keep away from Milton, N.H. as there is a strike on. Per order committee (Boston Globe, September 2, 1896).


Here we find another accidental death in which the victim was intoxicated. (Following the grisly wagon-dragging death in 1891).

Body Found in Milton Pond. SANFORD, Me, Nov. 11 – The body of John Steves, who disappeared from West Lebanon last week, was found floating in the pond at Milton, N.H., today. He was last seen Friday night, and was then in an intoxicated condition. It is supposed that in attempting to cross the railway bridge on the North Conway branch of the Boston & Maine he fell into the water and perished (Boston Globe, November 12, 1896).

Mr. Steves left little in the way of a documentary record. One supposes that he did his drinking in Milton and was attempting to cross back to the Lebanon, ME, side of the river.


Previous in sequence: Milton in the News – 1895; next in sequence: Milton in the News – 1897


References:

Find a Grave. (2013, July 7). Charles Linwood Bodwell. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/113448151

Find a Grave. (2011, January 26). Pvt. William P. Cook. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/64713218

Frank, Elizabeth. (1986). Louise Bogan: A Portrait. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=SSsaOu2w85UC&pg=PA6

Massachusetts Department of Labor and Statistics. (1896). Annual Report on the Statistics of Manufactures. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=zSwaAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA254

Massachusetts Department of Labor and Statistics. (1897). Annual Report on the Statistics of Manufactures. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=M6AoAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA197

Wikipedia. (2019, February 25). Louise Bogan. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louise_Bogan

Wikipedia. (2018, October 11). Townsend, Massachusetts. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Townsend,_Massachusetts

YouTube. (2018, June 3). Penny Loafers Hand Lasting. Retrieved from www.youtube.com/watch?v=4O2yjII_WLU

 

Public BOS Session Scheduled (May 20, 2019)

By Muriel Bristol | May 17, 2019

The Milton Board of Selectmen (BOS) have posted their agenda for a Public BOS meeting to be held Monday, May 20, beginning at 6:00 PM.

There will be also a concluding Non-Public session (regarding a matter whose discussion “would likely affect adversely the reputation” of someone) after the Public portion of the BOS meeting (see below).

Ernest M. Cartier Creveling received his appointment as the new Town Administrator as of Monday, May 15. This would be his first meeting as Milton Town Administrator.


The Public portion of the agenda has New Business, Old Business, Other Business, and some housekeeping items.

Under New Business are scheduled four agenda items: 1) Appoint Board of Selectmen Liaison Townhouse Stewardship Committee, 2) Approval of Public Works Employee Hiring (Pat Smith), 3) Public Hearing – Acquisition and Possible Disposition of Land Parcel; Tax Map 17, Lot 5, and 4) Request to Purchase Tax Map 37 Lot 64 (Jackie Monahan).

Appoint Board of Selectmen Liaison Townhouse Stewardship Committee. At their inaugural meeting, the BOS neglected to appoint one of their members for all of the ex-officio BOS seats. Some lucky selectman will win an ex-officio seat on the Townhouse Stewardship Committee.

Approval of Public Works Employee Hiring (Pat Smith). The BOS began the Default Budget year already “in the hole” from last year’s employee medical insurance increases. This agenda item heralds a fifth new hire since then: two policemen, a town administrator, a land use clerk, and now a DPW employee.

Newton’s third law of default budgets informs us that for every budget expenditure there must be an equal and opposite budget cut (probably to a service).

Public Hearing – Acquisition and Possible Disposition of Land Parcel; Tax Map 17, Lot 5. At the last meeting, we were informed that this property was already acquired in 2015, but without the proper rigmarole, and that two Public Hearings would be necessary to set things straight.

Request to Purchase Tax Map 37 Lot 64 (Jackie Monahan). Ms. Jackie Monahan, of Ford Farm Road, might like to purchase a roughly $200 addition to her annual tax bill, in the form of another 0.4-acre parcel on Ford Farm Road.


Under Old Business is scheduled one item: 5) Approve Economic Development Committee & Recreation Commission Appointments.

Approve Economic Development Committee & Recreation Commission Appointments. Rather than dissolve the various boards, committees, and commissions that lacked candidates at the recent election, evidently due to a lack of interest, the BOS will designate their personal favorites from among such as asked them for post-election appointments.


Other Business That May Come Before the Board has no scheduled items.


Next, there will be the approval of prior minutes (from the Special BOS meeting of May 4 (the tax-titled property auction), and the BOS meeting of May 6, 2019), the expenditure report, Public Comments “Pertaining to Topics Discussed,” Town Administrator comments, and BOS comments.


Non-Public Session: 91-A:3 II (c) – Reputation

Earlier in the week, this Public BOS meeting was to have begun with a Non-Public session at 5:30 PM, for a Non-Public agenda item classed as 91-A3 II (c). The BOS appears to be holding that Non-Public session at the conclusion of their Public BOS meeting instead of at the beginning as they usually do.

91-A:3 II (c). Matters which, if discussed in public, would likely affect adversely the reputation of any person, other than a member of the public body itself, unless such person requests an open meeting. This exemption shall extend to any application for assistance or tax abatement or waiver of a fee, fine, or other levy, if based on inability to pay or poverty of the applicant.

An additional annotation of “Reputation” was added to the usual 91-A justification. Someone thought we should know that this particular Non-Public session would deal specifically with a matter that might affect adversely the reputation of some person, other than a member of the public body. (And that it would not deal with any application for assistance, tax abatement, or waiver).

Peekaboo. Everyone can see who comes and goes from these Non-Public sessions. Only an ostrich or a toddler think that if they cannot see you, you cannot see them.

(Well, maybe it works for truck drivers and their rear-view mirrors. And group photos and the camera).

[Added from the court filings database, October 23, 2019: “New Hampshire Supreme Court, Report on Status of Cases, As of September 30, 2019. Case 2019-0278. Three Ponds Resort, LLC v. Town of Milton. 05/15/2019 – Case Filing. 06/04/2019 – Accepted.”]


Mr. S.D. Plissken contributed to this article.


References:

State of New Hampshire. (2016, June 21). RSA Chapter 91-A. Access to Governmental Records and Meetings. Retrieved from www.gencourt.state.nh.us/rsa/html/VI/91-A/91-A-3.htm

Town of Milton. (2019, May 2). BOS Meeting Agenda, May 4, 2019. Retrieved from www.miltonnh-us.com/sites/miltonnh/files/agendas/5.4.19_bos_agenda-town_property_auction_0.pdf

Town of Milton. (2019, May 2). BOS Meeting Agenda, May 6, 2019. Retrieved from www.miltonnh-us.com/sites/miltonnh/files/agendas/5.6.19_bos_agenda.pdf

Town of Milton. (2019, May 17). BOS Meeting Agenda, May 20, 2019. Retrieved from www.miltonnh-us.com/sites/miltonnh/files/agendas/5.20.19_bos_agenda.pdf

Town of Milton. (2019). Press Release: Milton Names New Town Administrator. Retrieved from www.miltonnh-us.com/sites/miltonnh/files/news/press_release-milton_names_new_town_administrator.pdf

Wikipedia. (2019, April 25). Newton’s Laws of Motion. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Newton%27s_laws_of_motion

Youtube. (1965). Cone of Silence. Retrieved from www.youtube.com/watch?v=g1eUIK9CihA&feature=youtu.be&t=1

Taxation Is Theft

By S.D. Plissken | May 16, 2019

For well over a month now, some of New Hampshire’s Republican legislators have been working the phrase “Taxation is theft” into their speeches on the House floor in Concord. (See video compilation in the References below).

One might ask what they mean by this. By way of explanation, the classic “How Many Men?” thought experiment took us along a continuum of theft. It comes in many variations, of which we will here provide but two. You are challenged to identify the point at which theft ceases to be theft.

British theologian J. Budziszewski provided the following How Many Men? sequence.

  1. On a dark street, a man draws a knife and demands my money for drugs.
  2. Instead of demanding my money for drugs, he demands it for the Church.
  3. Instead of being alone, he is with a bishop of the Church who acts as bagman.
  4. Instead of drawing a knife, he produces a policeman who says I must do as he says.
  5. Instead of meeting me on the street, he mails me his demand as an official agent of the government.

If the first is theft, it is difficult to see why the other four are not also theft. Expropriation is wrong not because its causes are wrong, but because it is a violation of the Eighth Commandment: Thou shalt not steal.

[Ed. note: the church in this example is an “established” church, i.e., an arm of the British government].

Strictly speaking, the menaces threatened make taxation more of an Extortion, or perhaps a Robbery, but the Taxation is Theft phrase reaches for some degree of alliteration.

American jurist Andrew Napolitano provided a similar How Many Men? sequence from a legal point of view.

  1. Is it theft if one man steals a car?
  2. What if a gang of five men steal the car?
  3. What if a gang of ten men take a vote (allowing the victim to vote as well) on whether to steal the car before stealing it?
  4. What if one hundred men take the car and give the victim back a bicycle?
  5. What if two hundred men not only give the victim back a bicycle but buy a poor person a bicycle, as well?

The experiment challenges an individual to determine how large a group is required before the taking of an individual’s property becomes the “democratic right” of the majority.

For many, there is no point at which it ceases to be a theft. They claim there can never be such a point. Individuals lack the right to perpetrate theft. Aggregate groups of individuals, such as democratically-voting majorities or their democratically-elected representatives, also lack that right, as groups cannot acquire any extra rights above and beyond those of the individuals of which they are composed.

One might hope that this newly-expressed awareness of majority theft spreads like wildfire throughout the Republican caucus. Perhaps it might temper their own actions when they regain the majority.

One might hope also that this awareness is infectious and crosses over the aisle to the current majority Democrat caucus too.

In fact, awareness of the true nature of taxation should permeate through every level of government, right down to Milton selectmen. It might have the happy effect of limiting some of their wilder fancies.

As the WW II posters asked when seeking to save scarce resources, “Is this trip really necessary?”

Meanwhile, those of us in the peanut gallery may watch these interesting floor speeches by these few “woken” representatives. Too funny.

References:

Wikipedia. (2019, May 15). Extortion. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extortion

Wikipedia. (2019, May 16). Robbery. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robbery

Wikipedia. (2019, May 12). Taxation as Theft. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taxation_as_theft

Wikipedia. (2019, May 13). Theft. Retrieved from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theft

Yokela, Josh (Concord Monitor). (2019, April 1). My Turn: Taxation is Theft – and Here’s Why. Retrieved from www.concordmonitor.com/Taxation-is-theft-2441211

Youtube. (2019, April 4). NH Representatives Stating That Taxation Is Theft. Retrieved from www.youtube.com/watch?v=cGO7m8O83ZQ

NH Legislative Hearings, May 14 and 15

By S.D. Plissken | May 12, 2019

A Concord correspondent informs us that there will be thirty-one NH legislative hearings in the upcoming week. Because the next bill will create Utopia.

Every proposed bill passing though the New Hampshire legislature gets a hearing. No exceptions. Any citizen may sign up to testify in support or opposition of those bills. Or you can just go to “hear,” and perhaps to buttonhole our legislators. (Rep. Peter T. Hayward (R), Rep. Abigail Rooney (R), and Sen. Jeb Bradley (R)).

Our correspondent felt that three hearings of the thirty-one hearings held particular interest. They concern proposed bills seeking to prohibit government restrictions on free speech, to increase registry-of-deeds fees, and to increase fees for snowmobile registrations.


HB 154 Hearing – Prohibiting Government Settlement Restrictions on Free Speech

House Bill 154 seeks to “prohibit non-disparagement clauses in settlement agreements involving a governmental unit.”

So, you reached a settlement of your lawsuit against some government entity. But that entity demands as a condition of the settlement that you never speak of how completely overbearing and unconstitutional its original overreach was. Government bureaucrats do not want others to know when they have gone too far, and that they can be successfully opposed. They would prefer to muzzle you as a part of their settlement.

This bill would squash that practice. Some rate this free speech-oriented bill as being moderately partisan, in that it was put forward and supported largely by Democrats. It does have some Republican sponsors. It should have 400 sponsors, including our own state representatives Hayward and Rooney.

Its hearing will be held at 10:00 AM on Tuesday, May 14, in Room 100 of the State House. (Yes, at the very same time as the SB 74 hearing (below)).


SB 74 Hearing – Increasing Registry of Deeds Fees

Senate Bill 74 seeks to increase the “… Register of Deeds fees used to support the Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP), and establishing a committee to study the economic impact of land conservation.”

A tax by any other name would smell as sour. We have seen Milton officials seeking “grants” from this LCHIP fund. This is another one that should bear Selectman Lucier’s warning label: It comes also from taxation, just taxation exacted at another level of government. It is not “free money.”

Some rated this fee-increasing bill as strongly partisan (from the Democrat side). Do you want to be New Massachusetts, people? This is how you turn into New Massachusetts: constantly increasing fees, fines, and taxes. Always for a “good cause,” of course. Except when they play bait and switch, as they did already with the supposedly ear-marked Keno money.

Its hearing will be held at 10:00 AM on Tuesday, May 14, in Room 202 of the Legislative Office Building. (Yes, at the very same time as the HB 154 hearing (above)).


SB 187 Hearing – Increasing Snowmobile Fees

Senate Bill 187 seeks to increase “OHRV dealer and rental agency registration fees and snowmobile registration fees.”

Again, a tax by any other name would smell as sour. Some rated this as a bipartisan bill. Apparently, increasing snowmobile registration fees is a bipartisan thing. No “good cause” specified; just more for government.

Evergreen Valley Snowmobile Club, the NH Senate is calling your name. They would like to hear your opinion regarding snowmobile registration fee increases at their SB 187 hearing.

The hearing will be held at 10:45 AM on Wednesday, May 15, in Room 202 of the Legislative Office Building. (Yes, the very same place as the SB 74 hearing of the previous day (above)).


“No man’s life, liberty or property are safe while the Legislature is in session” – Gideon J. Tucker


References:

Legiscan. (2019). New Hampshire House Bill 154. Retrieved from legiscan.com/NH/bill/HB154/2019

Legiscan. (2019). New Hampshire Senate Bill 74. Retrieved from legiscan.com/NH/bill/SB74/2019

Legiscan. (2019). New Hampshire Senate Bill 187. Retrieved from legiscan.com/NH/bill/SB187/2019

NH General Court. (2019). Directions to the State House and Legislative Office Building. Retrieved from www.gencourt.state.nh.us/misc/directions/default.html

NH General Court. (2019). Representative Peter T. Hayward. Retrieved from www.gencourt.state.nh.us/house/members/member.aspx?member=408928

NH General Court. (2019). Representative Abigail Rooney. Retrieved from www.gencourt.state.nh.us/house/members/member.aspx?pid=9274

NH General Court. (2019). Roster of the New Hampshire State Senators (including Senator Jeb Bradley). Retrieved from gencourt.state.nh.us/Senate/members/senate_roster.aspx

NH Government. (2019). Concord State Office Locator. Retrieved from www.nh.gov/government/locator-map.htm